With the focus moving to delivering vaccines in difficult to reach areas, the Centre and state governments are taking the drone route to get to such terrains. On one hand, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has sought bids from drone operators to supply medicines and vaccines; on the other, the Telangana government has launched a project to check delivery feasibility of medical supplies. Companies with logistics experience including Flipkart and Dunzo have announced their consortia under Telangana’s drone delivery scheme to develop and execute drone deliveries there.
As per ICMR’s June 11 tender document, floated by HLL Infra Tech Services on its behalf, the aim is to develop a “feasible” model for vaccine delivery to ensure last-mile coverage of “difficult” terrains in “selected” locations. It was floated using the preliminary results of a “successfully” conducted feasibility study with IIT-Kanpur to deliver vaccines using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).