As Nepal reels under the second wave of the pandemic, President Bidhya Devi Bhandari has requested Indian counterpart Ram Nath Kovind for access to COVID-19 vaccines. President Bhandari wrote to President Ram Nath Kovind on Wednesday, requesting him to help Nepal with the supply of Made in India vaccines.
"It has been communicated through diplomatic channels with Indian President requesting access to locally developed and manufactured anti-COVID vaccine. President Bhandari also thanked India for its assistance till date to fight the pandemic and measures to control it," Tika Dhakal, Communication expert to Nepali President said.
As per the official, the Nepali President also requested her counterpart to help the country with interrupted supplies of previously ordered COVISHIELD vaccines. She also thanked India for providing jabs under India's Vaccine Maitri initiative and the COVAX facility.
On Jan 2, Nepal had received one million doses from the Serum Institute of India and also a total of 348,000 doses under the COVAX facility on March 7.
The Nepali President also had a telephonic conversation with Chinese President Xi Jinping seeking Coronavirus vaccines, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed. The Chinese President reportedly committed one million doses of the anti-COVID vaccine on a grant basis.
"During the conversation, the Chinese President announced that China will provide additional 1 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Nepal as grant assistance. President Xi also assured that Nepal will remain on a priority of China in vaccine support and cooperation," release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated.
Nepal to date has recorded a total of 5,35,525 COVID-19 cases with 411603 recoveries and 6,845 fatalities. On Wednesday, Nepal recorded as many as 6,714 infections while 6,716 patients recovered and got discharged.
The health ministry also recorded 145 deaths related to COVID-19 on the same day. There are currently 101,777 active cases across the country. Of them, 108,620 are in home isolation, 8,457 are in institutional isolation, 1,671 in ICUs and 434 on ventilators.
(With inputs from agency)