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COVID Vaccine Availability An Area Of Concern; Necessary To Vaccinate All Even If It Is For The Selfish Interest Of Others: Madras High Court

Sparsh Upadhyay
31 May 2021 3:53 PM GMT
COVID Vaccine Availability An Area Of Concern; Necessary To Vaccinate All Even If It Is For The Selfish Interest Of Others: Madras High Court
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On a plea seeking vaccination for the homeless, the Madras High Court on Monday (May 31) observed that even if it is for the selfish interest of the rest of the population which may be better placed, it is necessary to vaccinate all, since those who are not vaccinated may be a risk to the others. However, the Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar...

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On a plea seeking vaccination for the homeless, the Madras High Court on Monday (May 31) observed that even if it is for the selfish interest of the rest of the population which may be better placed, it is necessary to vaccinate all, since those who are not vaccinated may be a risk to the others.

However, the Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy noted that at present, vaccines are not available in adequate quantities.

Thus, the Court expressed hope that all Municipal Corporations and Municipalities and like bodies take the initiative to ensure that all homeless persons, pavement dwellers and others who may not have any registration or other documents are administered the vaccine upon assessing their health conditions.

The matters will now appear 4 weeks hence.

Medical facilities, Vaccines, etc

In the suo moto petition initiated by the High Court related to the COVID management in the State of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, the Court made several crucial observations.

The Court took into account the submission made by the Tamil Nadu Government indicating an increased number of beds and ready availability of both oxygen-supported beds and non-oxygen beds.

To this, the Court said,

"It is only hoped that the additional facilities are not discontinued for the next few months and, even if it costs a bit more, they are maintained if only to ensure that the dearth that was faced during the second surge is not repeated."

Again, the court observed that the area of concern appeared to be the availability of vaccines and the report filed by the Union indicates the allotment of vaccines free of cost to the State and the Union Territory.

Further, noting the Union's commitment to ensure that 216 crore doses of vaccine are available by the end of the year has been recorded, the Court said "It is hoped that the target is met sooner, rather than later."

MLAs/ministers visit to the Hospitals

The Court noted the suggestions made for the Hon'ble Ministers of the State and the members of the legislative assembly to ensure that when they visit any hospital, the entourage accompanying them is limited.

Before the Court, it was pointed out that though the Chief Minister and the Ministers have a few government officials accompanying them, some MLAs come with a train of supporters who do not maintain any distancing norms.

To the Court said,

"All concerned, including the hospitals and clinics that the MLAs visit for the purpose of looking into the conditions thereat or to oversee the treatment provided, should maintain the Covid protocol at all times."
"It sometimes happens that despite the person leading the team advising others not to accompany, the enthusiasm cannot be checked. There may be a need, at times, to restrict the number of persons accompanying, etc. legislators and the like while they go on their visits," added the Court.

Lastly, the matter was posted for a week hence, while expressing hope that the vaccination drive and the awareness drive to administer vaccine would be kept up and the superstitions and the unsubstantiated myths built around the vaccine are dispelled

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