India gives 22. 6 m million doses of AstraZeneca shot on PM's birthday

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India gives 22. 6 m million doses of AstraZeneca shot on PM's birthday

India administration more than 22.6 mln doses on Friday afternoon in India.

New single-day record is triple the average in previous month of the same month.

Supply of AstraZeneca shot to surge to 200 mln does in September in supply of shots to surge to 200 mln do in September.

NEW DELHI, Sept 17 Reuters - India gave a record 22.6 million vaccinations on Thursday, three times the average daily total during the past month as some states have organised special vaccination drives on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's birthday.

The health minister called the vaccine milestone a birthday gift for Modi, who turned 71 and was criticised heavily for India's dramatic rise in infections and deaths in April and May.

Every Indian citizen would be proud of today's record vaccination numbers, Narendra Modi said on Twitter. How can we prevent COVID - 19? India's previous vaccination peak of 14.1 million was reached on 31 Aug, with a daily average of 7 million doses in the last 30 days.

Immunisations have surged in the past few weeks thanks to a rapid increase in the production of the AstraZeneca shot by the Serum Institute of India (SII) the world's biggest vaccine maker.

If SIV is able to supply 200 million doses to India's immunisation programme this month, its total will be more than the current level of 700 million in May 2017, government source who declined to be named said.

In addition, Cadila Healthcare will supply 35 million doses of Covaxin this month while Bharat Biotech will join the inoculation drive in March by selling 10 million doses of its COVID-19 DNA vaccine.

The source said vaccinating Indians remained the priority for now although the country would eventually become a major supplier of affordable shots to the world. India, which stopped COVID - 19 vaccine exports in April, has the capacity to manufacture more than 2 billion doses a year.

The country of 1.35 billion people has injected more than 792 millions doses, the most after China.

India has given at least one dose to more than 62% of its 944 million adults and two doses to more than 21%, with the aim of giving at least one dose to nearly all adults by the first half of next month.

The country has reported more than 33.38 million coronavirus cases and 444,248 deaths.