New Delhi: Children between 12-17 years of age should be immediately vaccinated as there is an apprehension that a likely third wave of COVID-19 could affect them more, a PIL filed by a minor has appealed to the Delhi High Court.
The plea also seeks priority in vaccination to parents of children up to 17 years of age as several kids were orphaned after their parents succumbed to COVID-19 during the second wave.
The matter came up for hearing on Friday before a bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh. Responding to the PIL, the bench today issued notices to Centre and others and sought a reply by June 4.
According to reports, two such PILs have been filed in the high court - the first is a minor represented through her mother and the second is the mother with a minor child.
The petition filed through advocates Bihu Sharma and Abhinav Mukerji, claims that according to the data of the number of persons infected between April 2021 to May 2021, the number of reported cases where children were infected "has risen tremendously" than last year.
It alleged that the vaccine policy of India has failed to factor in children or parents of children for vaccination and the Centre and Delhi government have also failed to prepare a national plan for including the minors during the present pandemic.
"That globally, countries have fully recognized the importance of vaccinating children, alongside adults, to curb, mitigate the ill effects of the present pandemic and have accordingly and effectively taken measures.
"Vaccines for children are being produced and administered in countries such as Canada, United States of America (USA), for children between the ages of 12-17 years," it said.