Is vaccine prices justifiable, asks Chidambaram


Congress leader P. Chidambaram has slammed the government over prices of vaccines, and asked why the government is not invoking compulsary licensing.

The former finance minister said in a tweet, “Will those who justified the Covisheld prices of Rs 400 and 600 also justify the Covaxin prices of Rs 600 and 1200 announced today?”

“The government is standing (not helplessly) and silently endorsing the blatant profiteering and exploitation by the two manufacturers. Why is the government not invoking the provision of ‘compulsory licensing’?” He said in another tweet.

Bharat Biotech has said its Covaxin will cost Rs 600 for state governments and Rs 1,200 for private hospitals, while the other vaccine maker, Serum Institute of India (SII), has said it will sell its Covishield developed by Oxford-AstraZeneca at Rs 400 a jab to states and Rs 600 to private hospitals.

Several chief ministers have raised red flag over the different pricing of vaccines and have asked for uniform pricing for all.