This is clearly a false claim. Most vaccine research and technology is publicly funded. At least 97% of research on the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine, called Covishield in India, has been publicly funded. Moderna, Janssen and BioNTech all received government funding.
US drug MNC Pfizer says it has chosen not to accept federal funds offered by the Trump administration as part of Operation Warp Speed. But its technology partner of the Covid BioNTech vaccine has received substantial funding from the German government. In addition, patented technology from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has helped make mRNA vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna possible. BioNTech has a license agreement with the NIH and Pfizer relies on this license.
By using patents, pharmaceutical monopolies around the world are turning the Covid pandemic into a huge, lucrative business. On May 4, 2021, Pfizer announced that the vaccine generated $ 3.5 billion in revenue in the first three months of this year, nearly a quarter of its total revenue. Vaccine production was the main source of its revenue, making about $ 900 million in pre-tax profits in the first quarter.
Since independence, mass vaccination against diseases such as smallpox, polio, rabies, measles, Japanese encephalitis, etc. has never been marketed by the government. But the Modi government had no qualms about marketing Covid-19 vaccines. Not only that, it also protects patents on Covid vaccines.
The Modi government has left the production of Covid vaccines entirely to private for-profit companies despite the reopening of closed public sector vaccine companies like the Central Research Institute, Kasauli; the Pasteur Institute of India, Coonoor; and the BCG Vaccines Lab, Chennai according to the order of the Supreme Court in 2012.