Sunday, June 13, 2021

Supreme Court Asks Centre to Place on Record Purchase History of All COVID-19 Vaccines

New Delhi: The Supreme Court has asked the Centre to place on record the purchase history till date of all Covid-19 vaccines along with relevant documents and file notings reflecting its thinking culminating in the vaccination policy.

A special SC bench of Justices DY Chandrachud, LN Rao and S Ravindra Bhat stated: “While filing its affidavit, UoI 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 SC informed that the data provided by the Centre should clarify the dates of all procurement orders for all three Covid-19 vaccines, as well as the quantity of jabs ordered and the projected date of supply. “Hence, we direct the UoI to file its affidavit within 2 weeks,” the top court said in its 31 May order uploaded today on its website.

The apex court has also asked the Centre to clarify how and when it will vaccinate the remaining population of the country. “The complete data on the Central Government’s purchase history of all the Covid-19 vaccines till date (Covaxin, Covishield and Sputnik V). The data should clarify: (a) the dates of all procurement orders placed by the Central Government for all 3 vaccines; (b) the quantity of vaccines ordered as on each date; and (c) the projected date of supply,” the bench said.

Earlier on 31 May, the SC had highlighted the “digital divide” between rural and urban India and posed searching queries to the Centre on mandatory registration on CoWIN for vaccines, vaccine procurement policy and differential pricing, saying the policy-makers “must have ears on ground” to effectively deal with the “unprecedented” crisis.

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