The Karnataka High Court on Thursday issued notice to the Central Government in a plea seeking to allow administration of COVID-19 vaccine, Covovax to all adult citizens. [Arun Kumar Agarwal v. Union of India]
Justice SG Pandit issued emergent notice in the petition which also sought an approval from the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) for administering the vaccine which is touted to have a 90% efficacy rate.
The petition was filed by a senior citizen, one Arun Kumar Agarwal, who claimed to be diabetic patient with comorbidities.
It was submitted that the petitioner has a fundamental right to vaccination, the denial of which infringes upon his right to life.
The plea stated that Covovax was made available for vaccination of children in the age group of 12-17 from first week of May, and was also being exported to various countries in large numbers. However, it was not being provided to Indian adults.
The classification of making the vaccine available to children, and not adults, was arbitrary and lacked any intelligible differential, the petitioner contended.
The plea further submitted that since the petitioner was a senior citizen, and patient of diabetes, he had been responsibly isolating himself from his close family members for the past two years.
The petitioner stated that he had been waiting for the approval of Covovax vaccine since its efficacy was much higher than the efficacy of Covisheild and Covaxin.
"Many doubly vaccinated adult Indians have died due to Covid and he preferred to wait, as higher the efficacy of a vaccine, better was the protection from Covid," the plea said.
Senior Advocate Uday Holla and advocate Vaibhav RM appeared for the petitioner.