Rajnath Singh inaugurates mobile testing lab for COVID-19 detection

Lab can process over 1000 samples in a day

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Laboratoy
Rajnath Singh launches country's First Mobile Testing Lab for COVID-19 detection; can process over 1000 samples in a day. Photo - pib

Defence minister, Rajnath Singh has unveiled via video conference a Mobile Virology Research and Diagnostics Laboratory (MVRDL) developed by DRDO in association with ESIC Hospital, Hyderabad and Private industry.

Speaking on this occasion, Singh said that the government under the leadership of prime minister Narendra Modi had taken several timely decisions because of which the spread of COVID-19 in the country is far less compared to many other countries.

Singh appreciated the setting up of this Bio-Safety Level 2 and Level 3 lab in a record time of 15 days, which usually takes about six months. He said this testing facility, which can process more than 1,000 samples in a day would enhance the country’s capabilities in fighting COVID19.

He said, Our armed forces are contributing in many ways – such as setting up of quarantine centers, providing healthcare facilities, evacuating Indian Nationals from other countries and more to fight COVID-19 and these efforts will continue.”

The function was also attended by G Kishan Reddy hon’ble union minister of State for Home Affairs, Santosh Kumar Gangwar hon’ble union minister of State for Labour and Employment, KT Rama Rao hon’ble minister for IT Industries, Municipal Administration and Urban Development, Government of Telangana, Ch Malla Reddy hon’ble minister of Labour, Government of Telangana and G Satheesh Reddy secretary DDR&D and chairman DRDO.

The first of such Mobile Viral Research Lab (MVRL) that will speed up COVID-19 screening and related R&D activities was developed by Research Centre Imarat (RCI), the Hyderabad based laboratory of DRDO in consultation with ESIC Hospital, Hyderabad.

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The Mobile Viral Research Lab is the combination of a BSL 3 lab and a BSL 2 lab essential to carry out the activities. The labs are built as per WHO and ICMR Bio-safety standards to meet international guidelines. The system has built-in electrical controls, LAN, Telephone cabling, and CCTV.

The Mobile Lab will be helpful to carry out diagnosis of COVID-19 and also virus culturing for drug screening; convalescent plasma-derived therapy, comprehensive immune profiling of COVID-19 patients towards vaccine development early clinical trials specific to Indian population. The lab screens 1000-2000 samples in a day. This lab can be positioned anywhere in the country, based on the requirement.

In addition, DRDO acknowledged the contributions of iCOMM for provision of containers, iClean for design and build of the BSL2 and BSL3 labs in a time-bound manner, and Hi-Tech Hydraulics for providing the base frame.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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