Plea seeks vaccine priority for legal fraternity

The Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to examine a plea to prioritise the administration of COVID-19 vaccine for the judiciary and the legal fraternity.

The plea said the well-being of the judiciary and legal fraternity were essential to guarantee the fundamental right to access to justice.

A Bench led by Chief Justice of India Sharad A. Bobde issued notice on the petition filed by an advocate, Arvind Singh, represented by advocates Amit Khemka and Rishi Sehgal.

Mr. Khemka said the court should “secure the legitimate interests and address the concerns of the legal fraternity all over India amidst exclusion from the priority category of group of population identified for administration of COVID-19 vaccine”.

As ‘frontline’ workers

Mr. Khemka, in a virtual court hearing, said persons associated with the legal system, i.e. judges, lawyers, court officers and staff were rendering essential services and ought to be included in the identified priority group of persons for administration of COVID-19 vaccine on a priority basis.

He argued that the expert group constituted by the government for guidance on vaccination had not considered the claim of the people belonging to legal community in it report. He argued that the legal fraternity and staff should also be considered frontline workers like the police and other government agencies.

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