More than 1.6 lakh wagons carried supplies in the last four days, including one lakh with essential commodities, to ensure there is no shortfall during the countrywide lockdown, the Railways said Friday. On March 23, a total of 26,577 wagons were loaded with essential commodities, which included 1,168 wagons of food grain, 42 wagons of fruits and vegetables, 42 of onion, 42 of sugar, 168 of salt, 20 of milk, 22,473 of coal and 2,322 of petroleum products.
On March 24, a total of 27,742 wagons were loaded with essential commodities, which included 1,444 wagons of food grain, 84 of fruits and vegetables, 168 of salt, 15 of milk, 50 of edible oil, 24,207 of coal and 1,774 of petroleum products.
The next day, 23,097 wagons were loaded and on March 26, 24,009 wagons were loaded with essential commodities.
Officials said each wagon has a capacity of carrying 60 tonnes.
"Close coordination is being maintained with state governments so that rakes of essential commodities are handled smoothly without any delay amidst various restrictions imposed in the wake of Covid-19," the national transporter said in a statement.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.