The apex court has rejected a PIL seeking a general order to the central government to begin door-to-door vaccination for the disabled, elderly and vulnerable groups. The court pointed out that over 60 per cent of the population had already received at least one dose of the vaccine.
Supreme Court of India. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
In response to a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking provision for door-to-door COVID19 vaccination of all citizens, particularly vulnerable groups, in the country, the Supreme Court today (September 8) rejected the petition saying such an exercise was not feasible. Given the diversity of conditions across states, the apex court said, a general order cannot be issued for the entire country.
“Vaccination is already under way. The court is monitoring it in a suo motu petition… The Supreme Court has constituted a National Task Force. At this stage it is difficult to give a general direction considering the diversity of this country… We should not impinge upon the administrative power of the State to give vaccine, including door-to-door,” stated the apex court.
The apex court has left it to the states to decide on implementing door-to-door COVID19 vaccination.
The Bench led by Justice DY Chandrachud was hearing a PIL filed by Youth Bar Association of India seeking a provision for door-to-door COVID19 vaccination of all the citizens residing in India, particularly the elderly, differently-abled, less privileged, weaker sections, and those who are unable to register online for their vaccination.
In the PIL, the petitioners had noted: “It would minimise the risk of getting infected whilst reaching the vaccination centre. The COVID-19 vaccination shall muster on the principle of ‘We are as strong as our weakest link’ and deprivation to vaccine to even single person, for any reason whatsoever, would be detrimental in the larger public interest.”
The bench asked the petitioner whether it wanted the court to direct the government to scrap its current vaccination drive when over 60 per cent of the population had already received at least one dose of the vaccine and start down the path of door-to-door vaccination.
Meanwhile, the apex court has allowed the petitioner liberty to approach the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare with its suggestions.
So far, 714 million doses have been administered in the country. A total of 66,255 government and private sites across the country are conducting vaccination.