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Disclose Covid-19 Vaccines’ Clinical Trial Data: SC to Centre

The Supreme Court issued notice to the Centre on disclosure of data regarding clinical trials of Covid-19 vaccines.

A health work administers with a dose of Covid-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, in Mumbai, on Aug 2, 2021. The camp was organized by the Reliance Foundation and Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai. (PTI Photo/Kunal Patil)

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday issued notices and has sought responses from the Centre and others on a plea seeking directions for disclosure of data regarding clinical trials of Covid-19 vaccines.

Disclosure of data regarding clinical trials of Covid-19 vaccines and post-vaccination and publishing this data is mandatory for the Central Government as per the International medical norms, the petitioner claims.

A bench of justices L Nageswara Rao and Hrishikesh Roy issued notice on the plea, and asked the Centre and others to respond to it within four weeks.

READ ALSO: Zydus Cadila Set To Receive Emergency Use Approval For Its Covid-19 Vaccine This Week

“We are issuing notice. We will wait for their (UOI) response. Let them (UOI) come with the reply. We will hear the matter after that. We will hear the issue, which you (petitioner) have raised,” a two-judge bench of the Apex Court said on Monday.

The petition was filed by Dr Jacob Puliyel through advocate Prashant Bhushan, seeking Apex Court’s direction for transparency in clinical trial data for the vaccines being administered in India under emergency use.

While hearing the plea, the bench referred to the problem of “vaccine hesitancy” in the country and asked advocate Prashant Bhushan, whether entertaining the petition would not create doubt in the minds of the citizens over vaccines.

READ ALSO: Covaxin Data Under Active Review In Canada, Says Bharat Biotech’s US Partner Ocugen

While making it clear that neither it is an “anti-vaccine petition” nor the petitioner is seeking to stop Covid vaccination in the country, Bhushan said transparency on the issue was needed and disclosure of data would rather clear all the doubts.

Bhushan added that the Helsinki and World Health Organization (WHO) mandated that all vaccine data and trials have to be made in a transparent manner, which, in “this case, was not made.”

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He has also sought direction to the Government of India to disclose the reasoned decision of the DCGI grants approval or rejection of an application for emergency use authorization of vaccines.

Advocate Bhushan has also sought the Centre to disclose the detailed minutes of the meetings of the Subject Expert Committee and the NTGAI with regard to the vaccines as directed by the 59th Parliamentary Standing Committee Report and the members who constituted the committee for the purpose of each approval.

The bench was hearing a plea seeking directions for disclosure of data on clinical trials of Covid-19 vaccines and also on post-vaccination.

(With inputs from ANI and PTI)

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