By Ahmad Adil
NEW DELHI (AA) - Reports emerged Sunday in India that US drug company Pfizer had applied to authorize its novel coronavirus vaccine in the country.
The local Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency reported that the country's drug regulator received Pfizer's application to import, sell and distribute its vaccine that it developed with German biotechnology partner BioNTech. It reportedly also sought a waiver for clinical trials in the country.
Meanwhile, public broadcaster Doordashan News tweeted: "#PfizerIndia seeks emergency use nod for #Covid19 vaccine from DCGI."
These came after the UK became the first country to approve the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine earlier this week.
However, the drug firm did not confirm the reports, telling Anadolu Agency that it was "committed to engaging with the Government of India and explore opportunities to make this vaccine available for use in the country."
There has yet been no official statement from the DGCI on the issue.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said this week that the government was developing a comprehensive vaccination strategy with about eight potential vaccines currently in different stages of the trial to be manufactured in India, including three indigenous shots.
According to a Health Ministry statement on Sunday, 36,011 people have contracted COVID-19 in the country, raising the total mark to over 9.6 million. coronavirus-related fatalities have also reached 140,182, including fresh 482 deaths.