After the central government had submitted an affidavit in the Supreme Court, defending its Covid vaccination policy, which has been criticised for differential pricing, shortage of doses and slow rollout, the Congress has slammed the Centre’s move and also sought the top court’s intervention.
Congress spokesperson Jaiveer Shergill said: “The Supreme Court should intervene as BJP can no longer can be trusted to uphold and protect right to health under Art 21 of Constitution. PM’s policy of ‘go global’ has jeopardised the public health.”
He said that government tells SC “no need for the court’s interference as vaccine policy confirms to Constitution.” But the government’s vaccine policy only confirms to BJP “publicity policy” and not “public health policy” whereby citizens are treated less equal than foreigners and right to health of young India is violated.
The Centre in the affidavit added that the price factor will not have any impact on the ultimate beneficiary namely, the eligible person getting the vaccine since all state governments have already declared their policy decision that each state will be administering vaccine to its residents, free of cost.
Urging against judicial interference on its vaccine policy, the Centre’s Sunday night affidavit said: “Any overzealous, though well-meaning judicial intervention may lead to unforeseen and unintended consequences, in absence of any expert advice or administrative experience, leaving the doctors, scientists, experts and executive very little room to find innovative solutions on the go.”
The Centre said it is most respectfully submitted that in the times of such grave and unprecedented crisis which the nation is fighting the disaster of an unprecedented magnitude, the executive functioning of the government needs discretion to formulate policy in larger interest.
“It is submitted that in view of the unprecedented and peculiar circumstances under which vaccination drive is devised as an executive policy, the wisdom of the executive should be trusted,” said the affidavit.