Amid the country’s wait for a vaccine for the coronavirus, Dr Shekhar Mande, Director General of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) on Saturday said the vaccine is safe and would not have adverse effects and urged people not to hesitate to take it.

“I want to assure everyone that the vaccine is very safe. It has cleared all safety trials and there are no adverse effects. People should not hesitate in taking the vaccine,” Mande told ANI.

Talking about the vaccine dry run that took place in four states across the country, Mande said, “If Dr Harsh Vardhan said the dry run was a success in four states, that is the most authentic voice of the government. This is a very good development and should set the country on track for vaccination as soon as approval is granted.”

He further compared the nation-wide vaccination process to the general elections.

“When the vaccine eventually gets regulatory approval, there is a huge task ahead of the government to make sure that all our population gets vaccinated. Calling it a ‘mammoth task’ would be an understatement. It is like conducting the general elections,” he said.

He further stressed the importance of preparedness to get the vaccine to the people, deliver it to them, and monitor them afterwards for at least a short while to check for adverse reactions.

According to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), the objective of the dry run that took place today for Covid-19 vaccine introduction was to “assess operational feasibility in the use of Covid Vaccine Intelligence Network (Co-WIN) application in a field environment, to test the linkages between planning and implementation and to identify the challenges and guide the way forward prior to actual implementation”.

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