At most India can only produce 90 million vaccines per month: Serum Institute of India -70 million and Bharat Biotech – 20 million. This was revealed in an edition of Gravitas. The question was asked: Why is India, the pharmaceutical hub of the world, not producing enough vaccine to inoculate its population?
India has more than 3,000 pharmaceutical companies and more than 10, 500 production facilities to produce all the vaccines the world needs but only two companies have licenses to produce vaccines to defeat COVID 19 – Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech. The others don’t have the licenses to produce the Covid 19 vaccines, that is, the approvals to use vaccines formulas which are patented.
Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson and Johnson are yet to give licenses to India to produce vaccines. Nevertheless, the Russians have shared their Sputnik V vaccine for India to start production. This is very generous of Russia whose leadership is painted as ‘evil’ by the US and other western powers.
Interestingly, western media in their coverage of the COVID 19 outbreaks in India are not informing their audience of these realities. They are painting a picture that India’s health system is weak and has collapsed and are happy showing grim images of makeshift crematoriums. The foreign media houses such as BBC have Indian correspondents who have failed Indian; they are certainly too happy to report what their bosses want to hear – that India is a third world nation and is far from developed world status.
Strangely, nothing is revealed about the failure of the west to share vaccines with India. Indian commentators on western media platforms dare not question the failure of the west to make available licenses to India to manufacture vaccines.
The West -UK, USA, Canada, Germany, Australia- are hoarding vaccines and are showing no interest in sharing them. It is vaccination of the people that is going to arrest the rising number of infections in India. The west has inoculated its populations -majority whites (as much as 70%) while less than 5% of the minorities have been inoculated.
While the west is historically known for their discriminatory practices- Britain plundering of India for more than 300 years- we cannot deny the fact that the average politician, businessman and policy makers have failed the Indian nation. Indians must accept responsibility for their failure to put measures in place to preempt an outbreak.
Unfortunately, the Indian ruling class has continued from where the British have left the country. As Sadguru would say: The British have left Indian in 1947 but continue to live in our heads. How does one explain the ongoing suicides by Indian farmers when they cannot repay their loans. Since 1995 almost 300,000 farmers have committed suicide, 60,750 in Maharashtra alone. More seriously, is the failure of the media and the mainstream society to raise alarm about this national shame and embarrassment.
Apart from Sadguru of Isha Foundation and Vandana Shiva there are not many known activists working to alleviate the sufferings of Indian farmers. Capitalism is a runaway crime in India. Deforestation is at a rate of 13.7 million hectares annually. Today India is ranked 10th in the world’s deforestation ranking.
Deforestation is the major cause of water scarcity as rivers run dry. Only a few weeks ago I read an article on clothes manufacturing in India and the impact of dyes in the pollution of rivers and the water table and its effects on farmers who are dependent on water for their crops and livestock. Sadguru’s ‘Rally for Rivers’ includes the planting of fruit trees to increase rainfall and also to help farmers to earn incomes to repay debts.
Sadguru has always lamented that 40 percent of the population has not eaten well. How can such a country claim first world status or the right to sit on the Security Council of the United Nation?
What does India have to offer the world when its educated elites shun its indigenous culture labelling the teaching of Sanskrit saffronization of education? Indians take pride in speaking English and its writings. They are in awe about the works of Shakespeare, not Tulsidas or Kalidas. Any mention of those names carries the risk of being branded communal. Indians would rather talk about Hamlet and Macbeth than Arjuna and Krishna. Now that the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia has announced the teaching of Mahabharata and Ramayana and Hinduism in Saudi schools, I await the response of India’s educated elite.
Both Dr. Koenraad Elst, a Belgium and author of Decolonizing the Hindu Mind and Francois Gautier, a French journalist living in India and writing for several French news media, have expressed shock at the high level of contempt, the educated Indian elites have for indigenous Indian culture and values. Nevertheless, these two foreign scholars have applauded the work of the RSS and its sister organizations and the work they are doing to create pride among Indians for their heritage.
Historically, Indians are known for overcoming challenges and setbacks. The common Indians are rising to the challenge while the very rich have taken flight to safe-havens. Nevertheless, this has been the reality throughout the ages. Despite this Mother India will live on!