1. Home
  2. Nation
  3. SC condemns govt’s mandatory registration on CoWIN, asks to have ‘ears on ground’

SC condemns govt’s mandatory registration on CoWIN, asks to have ‘ears on ground’

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date
SC condemns govt’s mandatory registration on CoWIN, asks to have ‘ears on ground’

New Delhi: Denouncing Centre’s mandatory online registration policy for Covid-19 vaccines, the Supreme Court on Monday asked policy makers to keep in mind the real ‘digital India’ situation in the country and to have an ear to the ground.

Also Read :- New Coronavirus variant "Probable" this year: Warns top French expert

A special bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud, L N Rao and S Ravindrabhat said that since the Centre has made CoWIN registration mandatory for vaccination, how is it going to address the issue of digital divide facing the country.

“You keep on saying the situation is dynamic but policy makers must have their ears on ground. You keep on saying digital India, digital India but the situation is actually different in rural areas. How will an illiterate labourer, from Jharkhand get registered in Rajasthan? Tell us how you will address this digital divide,” the bench sought to know from solicitor general Tushar Mehta.

It said, “You must smell the coffee and see what is happening across the country. You must know the ground situation and change the policy accordingly. If we had to do it, we would have done it 15-20 days back”.

Mehta replied that registration is mandatory as a person needs to be traced for a second dose and as far as rural areas there are community centres where a person can get registered for vaccination.

Also Read :- ''Shocked'' by WHO plan for COVID origins study, China calls lab leak theory a RUMOUR

The bench questioned Mehta whether the government thinks that this process is viable and asked him to place the policy document on record.

The top court was hearing a suo motu case on management of COVID situation in the country.

At the outset, it asked the Centre about the vaccine procurement policy of the Centre by referring to the fact that states like Punjab and Delhi are in the process of issuing global tenders to procure foreign vaccines for COVID-19.

The bench said that even Municipal Corporation like Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has received bids.

“Is this the policy of the central government that the state or municipal corporation can procure the vaccine or the Union Government is going to procure for them like a nodal agency? We want clarity on this and rationale behind this policy,” the bench said.

Also Read :- At least two-thirds of Indians have Covid antibodies, 40 crore still vulnerable: ICMR

In the meantime, the Centre said the entire eligible population would be vaccinated by the end of 2021 and moreover, the government is in talks with companies like Pfizer and if it succeeds then timeline for completing the vaccination would change, the law officer said.

The hearing in the matter is currently underway.

To note, earlier, the top court had constituted a 12-member National Task Force to formulate a methodology for the scientific allocation of Oxygen to states and UTs to save lives of COVID patients and to facilitate a public health response to the pandemic. 

Further reading:
For the latest news and reviews, follow us on Facebook and Twitter ...