100 crore vaccinations in 270 days are simply breathtaking.

The last 18 months have been the most significant defining moment and trajectory in Indian history. The work started much before a common man could realise, in early 2020. The amount of work in R&D, research, data, RCT, data analytics, manufacturing and distribution, centres, manpower allocations, syringes and needles supply, local supply chain management, and on ground logistics, has been commendable.
It has been admirable work by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Government of India, doctors, nurses, Asha workers, sanitation facilities. Cowin app and IT support have served India well. It was helped by the statesman like leadership of PM Modi. It was leadership from the front—foresighted, planned details at micro level beautifully. This has been the most brilliant display of meticulous planning, precision strategies, superb execution, keeping patient safety first. 100 crore vaccinations in 270 days is simply breathtaking.
India started this critical campaign 30 days after the United States did and accomplished 2-5 times more than the others. Vaccines have reduced infection rates by eight-fold, hospital-admissions by 25-fold and deaths by 25-fold. Every life counts. Every soul is precious. We must also prepare to tackle long Covid patients. The infrastructure we have now built will help us for decades to come. Well it’s 100 not out and now we take guard to march further on. This has been textbook layout picture perfect implementation. It is the largest, biggest, safest vaccination drive in the world, where scalability and sustainability are the mantra. We are the first country to decode the SARS-CoV2 genome, one of the five in the world to produce these life-saving vaccines.
We were over decades the vaccination pioneers and today, we have proved to be champions of the world, with the lowest case fatality rate (CFR) of 315/1 million population vs USA; with nearing 2,000/1 million population. Thus, extraordinary performances in the remotest of areas in India is a testimony of Indian resilience of healthcare, versatility of our planning, and tenacity of our society. Well done, India and Thank you, PM Sir!
We saw four pandemics in the last two years:
1. The original variant pandemic; 2. Delta variants; 3. Scariants (Oppositions who created scare and vaccines hesitancy); 4. Infodemic of misinformation. But accurate and scientifically vetted protocols have muted the variants and scariants too. Both our vaccines, Covishield and Covaxin have proved to be excellent on ground: with a protecting rate of more than 90%, just 0.2% breakthrough infections and 0.005% VIAR, the Indian vaccines have saved millions of lives.
These vaccines have decreased the host-to-host viral transmission, community transmission, lower viral load, decreased severe cases, lowered death rates, and lowered the long Covid impact. This is a new look India.
But the battle isn’t over just yet. We will overcome this catastrophic pandemic with science and vaccines. India’s model is the best in the world for others to look up to and try to emulate. In the next 80 odd days of this year, we will continue to upscale our vaccines numbers. We are on the verge of launching the world’s first DNA vaccine, paediatric vaccination and intra nasal vaccination.
We have covered 60%-65% of our journey to reach 190 crore injections. With 79% single vaccinations and 32% double vaccinated, we need to contour momentum to ensure the third wave is buried. The Indian vaccines are safe and solid, with no significant side effects of blood clots or myocarditis or anaphylaxis. The endpoints of our home grown vaccines of Covaxin have overall vaccine efficacy of 77.8% and a 65% protection even against the deadly Delta variant. Covishield has performed at 72%, and with excellent effectiveness results.
Boosters will need a look in, in the next few months. Immunology has retaught us all to analyse our research in detail. The next many generations belong to India, to the country which has transformed itself. From 85 days for the first 10 crore, we are clocking in 10 crore every 10 days now. Cometh the hour, cometh the man—our Hon’ble PM. Believe in science, trust technology, have self belief, collaborate for best results, fear no failure, aim high to continue to be global bests.
My prayer to every family who has lost any member to this devastating illness. God give you all the strength to overcome these tragic losses. But in the dawn of the new era of dominant India, where we work without fear or favour, we pledge ourselves to our nation to rebuild on our gaps, help the needy and support the world in all endeavours. After all, we are givers of the world to the world.
Western media has been inflicted with cognitive bias—many do not take them seriously or with much credibility. Compare with Indian media which has been sane and accurate and unbiased. A 100 crore vaccines, a 100 crore dreams and a zillion blessings to our great nation. It’s a “Modi-fied” India. Jai Hind.

Prof Dr Sanjeev Bagai, Padmashri, is Senior Consultant Paediatrician and Neonatologist and Pead, Nephrologist.