‘COVID-19 Vaccination Cannot Be Insisted Upon By Employer’: Delhi High Court Grants Relief To Lecturer

Nupur Thapliyal

23 Jan 2023 2:16 PM GMT

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  • ‘COVID-19 Vaccination Cannot Be Insisted Upon By Employer’: Delhi High Court Grants Relief To Lecturer

    Observing that COVID-19 vaccination cannot be insisted upon by the employer, the Delhi High Court has granted relief to a government school lecturer seeking permission to teach and undertake other responsibilities without being forced to take the vaccine.Noting that the teacher, who moved court in 2021, was now vaccinated, Justice Prathiba M Singh permitted her to make a representation to...

    Observing that COVID-19 vaccination cannot be insisted upon by the employer, the Delhi High Court has granted relief to a government school lecturer seeking permission to teach and undertake other responsibilities without being forced to take the vaccine.

    Noting that the teacher, who moved court in 2021, was now vaccinated, Justice Prathiba M Singh permitted her to make a representation to the concerned authority for service benefits and directed that the decision on the same be taken within 30 days.

    The petitioner is a lecturer of history subject in the Government Girls Senior Secondary School, under Delhi Government’s Directorate of Education.

    The court relied on the judgment of Supreme Court in Jacob Puliyel v. Union of India & Ors wherein it was observed that personal autonomy of an individual encompasses the right to refuse to undergo any medical treatment in the sphere of individual health.

    It also relied on the order passed by a coordinate bench in Narendar Kumar v. Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi wherein the Delhi Government submitted that in view of the Supreme Court ruling, no employer was insisting upon compulsory vaccination and that all employees had been permitted to re-join their posts without the stipulation of vaccination being mandated.

    The said order was also taken note of in other pleas moved by similarly placed individuals.

    Perusing the said orders, Justice Singh observed:

    “In view of the above-mentioned orders relating to similar fact situations, the present petition, along with all pending applications, is disposed of with the direction that Covid-19 vaccination cannot be insisted upon by the employer, in terms of the various orders passed above.”

    As the petitioner’s counsel submitted that the representation regarding service benefits to the teacher was made on June 14 last year, the court directed that the copy of the same be forwarded with a fresh covering letter to the authorities within one week.

    “A decision on the same shall be taken within four weeks by the Respondents. All remedies are left open,” the court said.

    Title: ISHA v. STATE (NCT OF DELHI) & ORS.

    Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (Del) 76

    Click Here To Read Order


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