UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres is saddened by the loss of life in a fire at the Serum Institute of India facility in Pune and hopes that the incident is fully investigated, his spokesperson has said.
Five men died after a fire broke out in a five-storeyed under-construction building in the Serum Institute of India’s Manjari premises in Pune on Thursday, police said.
The Manjari facility is where the Covishield vaccines used in the nationwide inoculation drive against the pandemic are made. The building where fire broke out is one km from the Covishield vaccine manufacturing unit.
We, obviously, are saddened by the loss of life and send our condolences to the families impacted, and we hope the fire is fully investigated, Stephane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General, said at the daily press briefing on Thursday.
Dujarric was responding to a question on whether the UN chief has a comment on the fire at the Serum Institute, which is producing COVID-19 vaccines in India.
Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla said that the Covishield vaccine production will not be hit due to the fire.
“I would like to reassure all governments and the public that there would be no loss of #COVISHIELD production due to multiple production buildings that I had kept in reserve to deal with such contingencies at @SerumInstIndia,” Poonawalla tweeted on Thursday.
Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said the state government has ordered a probe into the fire.