The United Kingdom recognised Covishield as a vaccine in its latest travel and quarantine rules. The move comes amid growing protests opposing the supposed discrimination against Indians. Nevertheless, Indians who have taken the Covishield vaccine will still have to remain in quarantine due to ‘certification issue’ according to UK government.
India warned UK of “reciprocal measures” if it does not address its concerns over the new travel rules related to Covid-19 vaccine certification. Indians also called the new policy “discriminatory”.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar raised the issue during the meeting with the newly-appointed British foreign secretary Elizabeth Truss in New York on Tuesday.
Speaking on the matter Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said, “The basic issue here is that a vaccine, Covishield, which is a licensed product of the UK company, manufactured in India of which we have supplied five million doses to the UK at the request of the government of the UK”.
During a media briefing Shringla said, “We understand that this is being used under the national health system, therefore non-recognition of Covishield is a discriminatory policy and impacts those of our citizens travelling to the UK”.
According to the latest travel updates issued by the UK, from October 4 one will qualify as fully vaccinated if they are “vaccinated under an approved vaccination programme in the UK, Europe, USA or UK vaccine programme overseas with a full course of the Oxford/ Astra Zeneca, Pfizer, BioNTech, Moderna or Janssen vaccines from a relevant public health body in several countries including Australia, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Singapore."
It also clarified the four listed vaccines, such as AstraZeneca Covishield, AstraZeneca Vaxzevria and Moderna Takeda qualify as approved vaccines.
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