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2 Indian drugmakers seek approval for COVID-19 vaccines

Move follows Pfizer application, with first licensing possible in a few weeks

Passengers wait in line to have their temperature checked at a railway station in Mumbai on Nov. 26.   © Reuters

NEW DELHI -- Two Indian companies have applied for emergency approval of their COVID-19 vaccine candidates in a country that is the second-worst hit by the coronavirus pandemic, days after U.S. drugmaker Pfizer did the same.

The Pune-based Serum Institute of India, or SII -- a manufacturing partner for the Covishield vaccine candidate from Oxford University and AstraZeneca -- and Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech, which is developing an indigenous vaccine called Covaxin, have sought emergency use authorization, Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan told a media briefing on Tuesday.

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