The company, Bharat Biotech is in news only now. Strangely, we needed a pandemic to know scientists, the virologists who work relentlessly to protect us from various diseases. Otherwise, did you know before now that this company is not just about the corona vaccine, it has to its credit two great achievements which we never bothered to laud – it created the world’s cheapest Hepatitis vaccine, India’s first cell-cultured swine-flu vaccine and was the first in the world to find a vaccine for the Zika virus.
The man behind Bharat Biotech, Dr Krishna Ella is a farmers son from Tamil Nadu. And his aim after studying agriculture was to remain a farmer. But economic pressures forced him to join Bayer’s agri division. This was also the time, he got a scholarship from the Rotary’s Freedom from Hunger Fellowship and went to study in the United States. He then completed his Master’s at the University of Hawaii and his PhD at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Like majority of Indians studying in US, he had no intentions of coming back to India but his mother persuaded him to return, giving him the freedom to choose to anything that he wanted to do in life. Dr.Krishna came up with a business plan to create a cheaper hepatitis vaccine and that’s how his journey really began.
Well, here is all the luck to Bharat Biotech to successfully carry out the human trials for the covid vaccine – Covaxin. Too many hopes hinge on the success of this shot!