Work to Deliver 2 Crore Doses of Covid Vaccine to 41 Places by Jan 8 Underway: AAI Cargo Official

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A senior official of AAI Cargo Logistics and Allied Services Co Ltd (AAICLAS) on Wednesday said the work to deliver two crore doses of COVID-19 vaccine to 41 destinations across the country from Pune by January 8 is underway. On the sidelines of a programme here, AAICLAS chief operating officer K Selvakumar told reporters, "In the first phase, two crore doses of COVID-19 vaccine are to be delivered from Pune to 41 destinations across the country with the help of more than 100 flights." This delivery is planned from January 6 to January 8.

Selvakumar was in Indore to attend the inauguration ceremony of a new international air cargo terminal at Devi Ahilya Bai Holkar Airport. The terminal has been built by AAICLAS, a subsidiary of the Airports Authority of India, at a cost of Rs 2.26 crore. Selvakumar said a total of nine lakh doses of the vaccine are planned to be delivered in four big cities of Madhya Pradesh Indore, Bhopal, Jabalpur and Gwalior in the first phase.

Without specifying the destinations, Selvakumar said the arrangements would be made at the respective airports for the delivery in such a way that the vaccines were loaded into the trucks within seven minutes, keeping the cold chain intact. Talking about COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan, he said over 100 flights would be operated to deliver the vaccines across the country and each aircraft would be loaded with 1,800 kg of vaccines.

Selvakumar said, "The vaccine will be kept in a special gel packing to maintain the set temperature. This gel will maintain proper temperature for 24 hours." The vaccine will need to be administered to the person concerned within 24 hours of being packed. He said, "The distance between Kashmir to Kanyakumari can be covered by air in four hours." There will be coordination between different government departments for vaccination. So, there will be no problem in getting the vaccine administered within the timeframe.

On Sunday, Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) approved Covishield of Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech's Covaxin for restricted emergency use.