Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij was administered a trial dose of India-made coronavirus vaccine 'Covaxin' on Friday, becoming the first volunteers for the third phase trial of the vaccine.
The 67-year-old Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader was administered the dose of Bharat Biotech's vaccine at the Civil Hospital in Ambala Cantt.
He is the first Cabinet minister of any state government who has volunteered to take the trial dose.
Civil Surgeon Kuldeep Singh said the Covaxin dose was successfully administered to Vij.
Before administering the dose, Vij underwent some tests at the hospital.
The minister told the media the vaccine likely to be available to the people by the beginning of next year.
Before reaching the civil hospital, Vij, while talking to media persons, said if all goes well, the vaccine against COVID-19 will be available to the people by the beginning of next year.
To a query, Vij, who has diabetes and had undergone a surgery, said he was not suffering from any such disease which will affect him adversely after taking the vaccine.
The MLA from Ambala Cantt, had on Wednesday said the third phase of trial of Covaxin will begin in the state on November 20 and had offered to get vaccinated.
Covaxin is being developed indigenously by Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
Last month, the vaccine maker said it had successfully completed the interim analysis of Phase 1 and 2 trials and is initiating Phase 3 trials.
Bharat Biotech had on Monday said the Phase 3 trial of Covaxin will involve 26,000 volunteers across 25 centres in India and is being conducted in partnership with the ICMR.
It is the largest clinical trial conducted for a COVID-19 vaccine in India.
This is India's first Phase 3 efficacy study for a COVID-19 vaccine, and the largest Phase 3 efficacy trial ever conducted.
Human trials of Covaxin had begun at Rohtak's Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences in July, Vij had said earlier.
(With inputs from agencies)