Tuesday, July 27, 2021

SC asks centre to furnish detailed data on purchase history of Covid vaccines

The Supreme Court has asked the Centre to furnish detailed data on the purchase history till date of all Covid vaccines including Covaxin, Covishield and Sputnik V. It also asked the Centre to place on record all relevant documents and file notings reflecting its thinking culminating in the vaccination policy.

A special bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud, L N Rao and S Ravindra Bhat said, while filing its affidavit, the Union of India shall also ensure that copies of all the relevant documents and file notings reflecting its thinking and culminating in the vaccination policy are also annexed on the vaccination policy. The bench has directed the Union of India to file its affidavit within 2 weeks. The bench said this in its order on 31st May , which was uploaded on its website yesterday.

Apart from asking the Centre to place the entire data on the purchase history of all Covid vaccines on record, the apex court ordered that the data should clarify the dates of all procurement orders placed by the Centre for all three vaccines, the quantity of vaccines ordered as on each date, and the projected date of supply.

It also asked the Centre to provide an outline for how and when the Centre seeks to vaccinate the remaining population.

It also asked the Centre to furnish data on the percentage of population that has been vaccinated, with one and both the doses, as against eligible persons in the first three phases of the vaccination drive.

The Supreme Court also sought steps being taken by the Central Government to ensure drug availability for mucormycosis.

On May 31st, while hearing a suo motu matter on issues relating to Covid-19 management, the top court had wondered if the mandatory registration requirement on the CoWIN portal for people to access vaccines is practical given the digital divide in the country.

The Centre, in reply, said that it is not oblivious to ground realities and since this is a dynamic situation, no policy is cast in stone. It also said it hopes to vaccinate all eligible persons by the end of 2021.

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