SPECIAL: Why the Covid menace dogs China?

China- manufactured vaccines have turned out ineffective, making already-vaccinated people prone to new infections. The helpless Beijing government now has warned of an “explosive” Covid-19 outbreak. Ineffective jabs cripples China while successful vaccination brings normalcy in India …. A special report by Dr Kailash Yadav

The Asian giants of China and India, which are often at loggerheads, competed with each other to find a vaccine for the Covid-19. China was the first to develop Covid-19 vaccines, which it claimed did bring the coronavirus cases under control. On other hand, India struggled to tame the rising infection before its vaccines were developed. Indian vaccines however have proven to be a great success as New Delhi has freed its citizens from lockdowns and other restrictions. Things however have become murky in China as coronavirus cases are flaring up. China- manufactured vaccines have turned out ineffective, making already-vaccinated people prone to new infections. The helpless Beijing government now has warned of an “explosive” Covid-19 outbreak.

India had witnessed havoc during the second wave of Covid-19 in mid-2021. It was the time when India had just introduced two of its vaccines- Covishield and Covaxin. New Delhi implemented its vaccine programme and managed to administer the jabs to the majority of its population before the year ended. Now, the almost entire population has been vaccinated. India remained unaffected when the fourth wave struck in 2021-end and even during the current fifth wave. It clearly suggests that the Indian vaccination programme has been a great success as it tamed the coronavirus spread in the densely populated country, where hygiene and public health cannot be considered at par with the standards defined by the developed world.

(Photo by Chu Yan_Xinhua_IANS)

It was found that the effectiveness of Indian jabs was 99.30 per cent in full-vaccinated people.  On other hand, the Chinese vaccines’ potency could not go beyond 79 per cent, says World Health Organisation (WHO).  A study by the University of Hong Kong has lowered the Chinese vaccines’ effectiveness further, limiting it to just 60 per cent. It further revealed that those vaccinated with Sinovac were three times more vulnerable to die compared to those inoculated with the German Pfizer–BioNTech vaccine.  Earlier, countries like Brazil, Bahrain, UAE, and Indonesia, which had procured Chinese vaccines questioned the effectiveness of the jabs against Covid-19. , ,  In April 2022, only 6.78 million vaccine doses were exported from China, which is 97 per cent lower compared to that in September 2021.

A Chinese study published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases journal has shown that Chinese vaccines were unable to detect Omicron sub-variants.  Chinese authorities have tried every possible measure including the controversial zero-covid policy to bring the viral transmission down. But everything is in vain. The number of cases is rising at a high rate, crippling normal life in China. Around 400 million people in China are affected, which amounts to over a quarter of the country’s population. As many as 45 cities including the financial hub of Shanghai were placed under strict lockdown in recent times in the wake of Chinese vaccines’ failure to tame the coronavirus.

In India, the situation has returned to pre-Covid times as there are no restrictions on public movement. Even face masks are not mandatory. India is expected to evade the stagflation that has hit China and other major economies.  The deteriorating situation in China has negatively impacted global companies as well as local businesses in the country. Many economists fear for economic recession in China now.  The high-handed approach of the Beijing government to covid-19 management has caused huge inconvenience to people who are stuck in their homes. Food shortage and loss of jobs due to forcefully-induced lockdowns have infuriated them.

People in China have lost their trust in vaccines due to their ineffectiveness and lack of transparency. After major Chinese vaccines proved hopeless, Beijing is betting on new mRNA vaccines.  However, the said mRNA has several side effects including fever.  People are under mental stress as they are forced to undergo mandatory Covid-19 tests often and to stay away from children. On other hand, people in India now appear to be immune to coronavirus as the vaccines have worked. They are allowed to visit any place they want, and businesses are permitted without any restrictions. According to the US Treasury Department, the Indian economy rebounded thanks to the accelerated vaccine rollout. Chinese vaccines however failed to live up to the expectations, hurting the people’s lives and countries’ overall economy in a long term.

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