New Delhi: Serum Institute of India Chief Executive Officer Adar Poonawalla has flew down to London late last week to escape from the threat he is receiving in the country. This development comes at a time when his company is manufacturing the most critical vaccines for the Covid-19.
In an interview to The Times, Poonawalla said that he left for London just before the UK was to announce a ban on Indian flights.
Speaking to The Times, he said ““I’m staying here for an extended time because I don’t want to go back to that situation.” Alleging threats from various quarters, Poonawalla said “Everything falls on my shoulders but I can’t do it alone,”.
“I don’t want to be in a situation where you are just trying to do your job, and just because you can’t supply the needs of X, Y or Z you really don’t want to guess what they are going to do,” he said.
“The level of expectation and aggression is really unprecedented, It’s overwhelming. Everyone feels they should get the vaccine. They can’t understand why anyone else should get it before them,” he said to The Times.
Poonawalla’s Serum Institute of India is the world’s largest producer of vaccines and is currently producing AstraZeneca’a Covid-19 Vaccine Covishield.
Elaborating on the situation in the country for him, Poonawalla said “They are saying if you don’t give us the vaccine it’s not going to be good.” “It’s not foul language. It’s the tone. It’s the implication of what they might do if I don’t comply. It’s taking control. It’s coming over and basically surrounding the place [Serum Institute campus in Pune] and not letting us do anything unless we give in to their demands.” Poonawalla also said that he was planning to begin production in other countries.
Meanwhile, in a late night tweet yesterday, Poonawalla has said that Covishield production is going on in full swing at the Serum Institute. “Had an excellent meeting with all our partners & stakeholders in the UK. Meanwhile, pleased to state that COVISHIELD’s production is in full swing in Pune. I look forward to reviewing operations upon my return in a few days,” tweeted Poonawalla.