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‘It Would be Foolishness to Assume…' Know the First Thought in PM Modi's Mind as Covid Engulfed World

Talking about the tough decision of imposing a nationwide lockdown to curb the spread of the virus, PM Modi, in History TV18's documentary ‘The Vial – India’s Vaccine Story’, said he was able to educate people that ‘Jaan hai toh jahaan hai’

March 24, 2023 / 10:07 PM IST
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on ‘The Vial – India’s Vaccine Story’ --- History TV18’s brand new documentary about the country’s incredible Covid-19 vaccine journey. (Screengrab)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on ‘The Vial – India’s Vaccine Story’ --- History TV18’s brand new documentary about the country’s incredible Covid-19 vaccine journey. (Screengrab)

For Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Covid-19 was never an isolated occurrence. In his first-ever detailed assessment of the pandemic that broke the world’s back, PM Modi, who features in ‘The Vial – India’s Vaccine Story’ --- History TV18’s new documentary on the country’s Covid-19 vaccine journey --- said the severity of the pandemic across the globe was becoming visible as images of overflowing hospitals and dead bodies came out.

“It is true that initially, India was insulated from the virus but today, the world is extremely small, inter-related, interconnected and inter-dependent. The first thought in my mind was that it would be foolishness to assume that the pandemic would be limited to the rest of the world and never hit India,” the prime minister said.

Follow India's vaccine story documentary on Histroy TV18 also on Twitter via #IndiaVaccineStory

Talking about the tough decision of imposing a nation-wide lockdown to curb the spread of the virus, PM Modi said: “The only way to escape the pandemic is to save yourself. ‘Jaan hai toh jahaan hai’. I was able to educate people about this.”

The prime minister admitted that even though the country knew that economic woes would follow and supply chains would be affected, people followed the Janta curfew. “It is a wonder for the world that a country as huge as India managed a lockdown of so many days. No other country in the world could take its citizens in that direction,” the prime minister said.

COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

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.

How many types of vaccines are there?

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.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

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.

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History TV18’s 60-minute documentary, narrated by actor Manoj Bajpayee, details the story of India’s grit in the face of an invisible enemy and how the country, led by PM Modi, developed, manufactured and delivered the Covid-19 vaccine in unprecedented timelines.

‘The Vial – India’s Vaccine Story’, which premieres on History TV18 at 8pm on Friday, has many firsts and several untold stories that make it a must-watch. It also features interviews of vaccine manufacturers --- Adar Poonawala, CEO of Serum Institute of India, and Dr Krishna Ella, chairman of Bharat Biotech --- among others apart from detailing India’s initiatives such as the CoWIN App and Vaccine Maitri to help other countries with the vaccine.