Vaccine Maitri Initiative is an initiative launched by India to gift COVID-19 vaccines to neighbouring countries. Recently, Sri Lanka and Bahrain have received the COVID-19 vaccines from India under the initiative. The Vaccine Maitri initiative was launched by India on January 20 to gift COVID-19 vaccines to neighbouring countries.
About the initiative:
- Sri Lanka has received 5 lakh Covid-19 vaccines from India as a part of the “Vaccine Maitri” initiative.
- Consignment of vaccines has also been sent to Bahrain. The country will receive 10,800 vaccines under the initiative.
- India has already delivered over 5 million doses to seven countries in the neighbourhood under the initiative before Sri Lanka and Bahrain.
- The 7 countries are- the Maldives (100,000 vaccines), Bhutan (150,000 vaccines), Nepal (1 million vaccines), Bangladesh (2 million vaccines), Myanmar (1.5 million vaccines), Mauritius (100,000 vaccines), and Seychelles (50,000 vaccines).
- Commercial supplies of Covishield have also been sent to Morocco, Brazil, (2 million doses each), and Bangladesh (5 million doses).
COVID-19 Vaccination in India:
The COVID-19 vaccination programme started in India on January 16, 2021, with the two approved vaccines (Emergency-use) – Covishield and Covaxin. In phase 1, health workers are being vaccinated followed by people above the age of 50 years.