Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi toured three of his country’s leading vaccine development and manufacturing sites, Saturday, November 28, as coronavirus cases continue to soar.
India has recorded 9.35 million COVID-19 infections, second only to the United States. It reported 41,322 new cases and 485 deaths on Saturday, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.
The western state of Maharashtra, home to India’s financial hub, Mumbai, has been particularly hard hit by the virus.
Modi conducted a whirlwind three-city tour and visited the Zydus Cadila CADI.NS facility in the western city of Ahmedabad, Bharat Biotech in the southern city of Hyderabad and the Serum Institute of India’s sprawling campus in the western city of Pune.
The companies are testing homegrown vaccine options, as well as working on trials of vaccines being developed overseas.
India’s Serum Institute, the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer, has partnered with global players including AstraZeneca AZN.L and Novavax Inc NVAX.O to run domestic trials on their vaccine candidates and produce the vaccines, if they secure approvals.