The government has faced a local supply crisis after international shipments of vials of the unclean-killing Coronavirus Enterovirus, CEEV, remained stuck at a Government-run liquid milk factory in Vidisha district.
The stockpile of the 10-12 lakh vials, each weighing 5 litres, was sent by the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to Tamil Nadu last month. It was to be transported to Vidisha’s pharmaceutical hub Adampur, which has total capacity to export 5 lakh vials a month.
A batch of 5 lakh vials of the vials arrived at Vidisha’s Aswal farm on February 21. Later, a problem was noticed when the liquid and nutritional contents in two separate batches of vials turned foul. The government pulled the plant down for a day.
The previous health and family welfare minister, Bali Bhagat, directed the district authorities to make the facility clean and get the consignment sent on February 22. The consignment was sitting in Vidisha since then.
The Raw Milk Marketing Board (Raw Milk Board) in Vidisha, however, insisted that the consignment is safe for use. “The liquid is clean, and sent by the CEEV. Meanwhile, the vials are being kept in cold boxes to prevent any problem,” said the Raw Milk Board’s chief executive officer, Harkesh Joti.
A Vasundhara incident has shown that hoarders can’t be ruled out. According to sources, Raw Milk Board official Anil Mittal, was tipped off by a local vendor and went to accompany the visit team to meet the Raw Milk Board officials.
Unconfirmed reports suggest that the visitor’s team noticed scavengers cutting the vials to remove the ingredients to meet their demands.
Since its widespread outbreak in September, the high-pathogenic CEEV, the two-week mortality rate is said to have shot up to 94 per cent. But the secret of a genuine safe vaccine, whose absence put millions in fear, is its use in mixing with regular vaccines.
According to officials, the raw milk that is produced at the VIDMA Agro Processor is fortified to make it safe for use.
“We will be in touch with Raw Milk Board officials. We have submitted a detailed report to the state government,”said Vidisha District Magistrate (DM) Pankaj Malhotra.