Covid vaccine doses from India reach Bhutan, Maldives


New Delhi: As many as 150,000 doses of Covishield vaccine, dispatched from India, reached Bhutan on Wednesday. “Vaccine Maitri begins. Consignment arrives in Bhutan. Another example of Neighbourhood First,” tweeted external affairs minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar.

While 100,000 doses reached Maldives too, according to Bangladesh’s foreign ministry, “A special flight of India carrying the consignment will land at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka (on January 21).”

Meanwhile, one million doses of the vaccine will land in Kathmandu on Thursday, a day after the nation began exporting its vaccine to other countries.

Hailing India’s initiative as a sign of the good relationship between the two countries, Nepal health minister Hridayesh Tripathi said, “This is an example of the relationship between Nepal and India. It has been named ‘Vaccine Maitri’.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said the vaccines will be sent to the neighbouring countries under India’s ‘Vaccine Maitri’ initiative.

“India is deeply honoured to be a long-trusted partner in meeting the healthcare needs of the global community. Supplies of Covid vaccines to several countries will commence tomorrow, and more will follow in the days ahead,” he tweeted.

During Nepalese foreign minister Pradeep Gyawali’s recent visit to India for the Joint Commission Meeting with Jaishankar, he was assured that Nepal would be among one of the first countries to receive the vaccine doses.