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Hope takes wings: Covid vaccines begin flying out of Pune – Times of India


NEW DELHI: “May all be free from disease.” With this line printed on boxes, Serum Institute of India (SII) began transporting Covid vaccines from Pune to other parts of India on Tuesday morning.
A flight of SpiceJet and then of Air India left with this cargo of hope for Delhi and Ahmedabad, respectively.
Prime Minister Modi had recently announced that India will begin the world’s largest vaccination program on January 16.
The first flight saw the past and present of Indian aviation coming together to save the future with an ex-Jet Airways Boeing 737 operating for SpiceJet now taking off for Delhi.
SpiceJet chairman and managing director (CMD) Ajay Singh said: “I am happy to share that SpiceJet has carried India’s first consignment of Covid vaccine today. The first consignment of Covishield consisting of 34 boxes and weighing 1,088 kg was carried from Pune to Delhi on SpiceJet flight 8937. We will be carrying multiple vaccine consignments to different Indian cities including Guwahati, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bhubaneswar, Bengaluru, Patna and Vijayawada through the day today.”
The first flight reached Delhi at about 10 am.
In a tweet on Tuesday, Air India had said it is “all set to play a pivotal role in vaccination mission, carrying the first consignment of 2,76,000 vaccine doses weighing 700 kg approximately from Pune to Ahmedabad today.”
“SpiceJet is fully committed and prepared to transport the Covid vaccine both within and outside India. Today marks the beginning of a long and decisive phase in India’s fight against the pandemic and SpiceJet is proud to assist in the biggest vaccination drive in the history of mankind,” Singh added.
The budget carrier has tied up with several companies for this task.



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