The Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to examine a PIL raising concerns of the legal fraternity across the country for being excluded from the priority list of people identified for Covid-19 vaccination drive.
A bench of Chief Justice S.A. Bobde and Justices A.S. Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian issued notice to the Central government on a plea filed by advocate Arvind Singh through advocate Rishi Sehgal.
Advocate Amit Khemka, representing the petitioner, contended before the bench that the persons associated with the judicial services, which includes judges, lawyers and the judicial staff all over the country are rendering essential services.
“Yet, the judicial officers and judges are not on the priority list. Everybody involved in the judicial system should get vaccine,” he submitted. He stressed that people involved in the judicial system should not be kept out of the ongoing Covid vaccination drive in the country.
After a brief hearing in the matter, the bench said: “Alright, we will consider this plea.”
The bench has scheduled the matter for further hearing after two weeks.
The petitioner maintained that the ‘legal system’ is one of the pillars of Constitution, which is involved in rendering essential services. The plea contended that the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration, constituted by the government for guidance on vaccination did not consider the claim of the people in the legal community in its report.
The petitioner contended though the police and other government agencies were being treated as frontline workers and all cases handled by these agencies eventually come to the court, yet people from the legal fraternity, who are also frontline workers, are not being treated as equal.