Can't scarp existing policy: SC on plea seeking door-to-door Covid vaccination

08-09-2021 Wed 16:00 IST | IANS | National

New Delhi, Sep 8:  The Supreme Court on Wednesday said door-to-door COVID-19 vaccination is not feasible and it cannot pass a general direction to scrap the existing vaccination policy.

A bench headed by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and comprising justices Vikram Nath and Hima Kohli asked the petitioner Youth Bar Association, to present its suggestions before a competent authority.

The plea had urged the top court to pass a direction allowing door-to-door COVID-19 jab for the disabled and people belonging to weaker sections of society. The bench responded that the vaccination drive is already in progress and over 60 per cent of the population has been administered the first dose.

The bench told the petitioner's counsel, "With one brush you want an order for the entire country. The vaccination drive is already in progress and over 60 per cent of the population has been administered the first dose".

The bench further added that it is matter of governance and it cannot scrap the existing policy. It said in Ladakh the situation is different from Kerala and in Uttar Pradesh the situation is different from any other state. The bench said: "In urban areas, situation is different from rural areas. There are different kinds of problems in every state in this vast country..."

The petitioner's counsel submitted that health ministry should be asked to consider the representation in a time bound manner. The bench replied that it understands that the ministry officials are under pressure during these testing times. "They have to look for oxygen supplies across the country, besides looking into other aspects", it added.

The bench told the petitioner's counsel that vaccination programme is already underway, and it is monitoring the situation under suo motu proceedings.

The bench further emphasized that in the backdrop of the diversity in the country, it is not feasible to pass general directions. "Any directions passed should not impinge upon the existing vaccination policy of the government," it said.

The plea sought direction to the Centre and all state governments to begin door to door COVID vaccination of less privileged, disabled, weaker sections of society. The petition contended that these people find it difficult to register on the CoWIN portal.



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