NEW DELHI, April 13 (Xinhua) -- The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has granted emergency use authorization license to Russian COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V, officials said on Tuesday.
The permission was sought by Indian vaccine manufacturer Dr. Reddy's Laboratories, which will be manufacturing the vaccines in India.
According to officials, permission was granted to the company late Monday. The decision came hours after an expert panel recommended emergency licensure to the vaccine.
With this permission, Sputnik V is now the third vaccine to get an emergency authorization in India after the Serum Institute of India's Covishield and Bharat Biotech's Covaxin.
"The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF, Russia's sovereign wealth fund) announces that Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) has approved the use of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine against coronavirus in the country. India has become the 60th country to approve Sputnik V," said a statement issued by the RDIF.
According to RDIF, the Russian vaccine has efficacy of 91.6 percent and provides full protection against severe cases of COVID-19 as demonstrated by the data published in one of the leading medical journals, The Lancet.
"India is a vaccine-manufacturing hub and our strategic partner for production of Sputnik V. RDIF has created partnerships with a number of India's leading pharmaceutical companies for production of Sputnik V which will provide for both vaccination of the population in India and global distribution of the Russian vaccine," the statement said.
Over 850 million doses of Sputnik V are going to be produced in India annually.
India is in the grip of an ongoing second wave of COVID-19 pandemic and globally it is the second worst-hit country after the United States.