SC Hearing On Covid-19: The Supreme Court today heard in detail the preparations being made by the central government to deal with the COVID-19 epidemic and the supply of all essential things including vaccines, medicines and oxygen. During this time, the Supreme Court asked the Central Government why in this period of terrible crisis, it does not work properly to distribute all the hundred percent doses of COVID vaccine itself and distribute it among the states
A division bench headed by Justice DY Chandrachud also said that private vaccine manufacturers cannot be allowed to decide which state should get which vaccine. The court has allowed the government to give a detailed power point presentation about the preparations to deal with COVID-19, so that the government can keep its view in detail.
The court said that whether the purchase of the vaccine is done by the central government or the state government, ultimately, this purchase is to be done only for the citizens of the country. Then why should there be two different prices for this? The court also asked the government to make it clear that it has entered into an agreement with the manufacturing companies to buy 50 percent of the vaccine, how long will it be supplied?
The court also asked the central government why it was not allowing more manufacturers to make it using compulsory licensing provisions to further increase production of the vaccine. The court said that the provisions of compulsory licensing have been made for such emergency situation. There can be no better opportunity to implement them.
The court also suggested that the central government should adopt the National Immunization Program model for vaccination, as poor people would not be able to pay the high cost of vaccine. If this is not done, what will happen to the people living on the margins of the society and the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes? Will they be left at the mercy of private hospitals?
The court said that the government should consider arranging free vaccination for all citizens. The court also advised that the health care sector of the country is not able to handle the burden of the epidemic, in such a situation, the retired doctors and officers should be added to this campaign again.
The Supreme Court has not yet issued its order in this case, but during the hearing, the country’s largest court asked many such important questions, which are very important in terms of trying to deal with the epidemic. The court reminded many times during the hearing that the country is going through an unprecedented crisis at the moment, so any comments or suggestions of the court should be taken as an attempt to improve the situation. During this, a presentation was also given by the Center, in which the government gave information about the steps being taken by its side.
On April 22, the Supreme Court, taking cognizance of the situation of the epidemic in the country, started hearing on this matter. Expressing concern over the sudden increase in the number of infection cases and deaths due to them, the court had asked the central government to present such a national action plan in this regard. The court said that in this national plan, there should be complete details of supply and distribution of every essential item and service, from oxygen and medicines.