Cannot force vaccination: Modi govt to top court
A health worker inoculates a auto-rickshaw with a dose of a vaccine against the Covid-19 coronavirus, at a drive-through vaccination centre inside a shopping mall in Mumbai on June 23, 2021. (Photo by INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP via Getty Images)
THE Narendra Modi government on Monday (17) told the Supreme Court of India that guidelines of Covid-19 vaccination issued by the central health ministry do not call for forcible vaccination without the consent of an individual.
The government also told the apex court on the issue of exempting persons with disabilities from producing vaccination certificates that it has not issued any standard operating procedure making it mandatory to carry the certification for any purpose.
The government said this in its affidavit filed in response to a plea made by non-governmental organisation Evara Foundation seeking door-to-door, priority Covid-19 vaccination for those with disabilities.
“It is submitted that the direction and guidelines released by Government of India and ministry of health and family welfare do not envisage any forcible vaccination without obtaining consent of the concerned individual.
“It is submitted that vaccination for COVID-19 is of larger public interest in view of the ongoing pandemic situation,” the affidavit filed by the health ministry said.
The ministry also said that “it is duly advised, advertised and communicated through various print and social media platforms that all citizens should get vaccinated and systems and processes have been designed to facilitate the same”.