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India approves vaccines from Bharat Biotech and Oxford/AstraZeneca

January 4, 2021 7:13 am

India has formally approved the emergency use of two coronavirus vaccines as it prepares for one of the world’s biggest inoculation drives.

The drugs regulatory authority gave the green light to the jabs developed by AstraZeneca with Oxford University and by local firm Bharat Biotech.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi called it “a decisive turning point”.

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India plans to inoculate some 300 million people on a priority list this year.

It has recorded the second-highest number of infections in the world, with more than 10.3 million confirmed cases to date. Nearly 150,000 people have died.

On Saturday India held nationwide drills to prepare more than 90,000 health care workers to administer vaccines across the country, which has a population of 1.3 billion people.

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