New Delhi: The central government on Monday asked the Serum Institute and Bharat Biotech to lower prices of their COVID-19 vaccines amid criticism from various states who objected to profiteering during such a crisis, reported news agency PTI quoting official sources. The issue of vaccine pricing was discussed at a meeting chaired by Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba on Monday. Now the two companies are expected to come up with revised pricing for their vaccines after the meet.Also Read - Price of Corbevax Covid-19 Vaccine Slashed to Rs 250 Per Dose. Deets Inside

Price of Covishield

The Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII), the world’s largest vaccine maker in terms of volume, has announced a price of Rs 400 per dose for its COVID-19 vaccine, ‘Covishield’, for state governments and Rs 600 per dose for private hospitals. Also Read - Is Serum's Covavax Vaccine Now Available For Children? This is What CEO Poonawala Says

Price of Covaxin

The Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech has fixed the price of its COVID-19 vaccine, Covaxin, at Rs 600 per dose for state governments and at Rs 1,200 per dose for private hospitals. Also Read - SII's Covid Vaccine Covovax Now Available for 12-17 Age Group at Private Centres

Both vaccines are available to the central government at a rate of Rs 150 per dose. Many states have raised strong objection to different prices of the vaccines, with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal saying this is not a time for profiteering.

India has announced expansion of its COVID-19 vaccination drive by allowing its large 18-plus population to get inoculated from May 1.

(With inputs from PTI)