NPF, NPP slam govt’s compulsory vax directive

DIMAPUR, JUL 23 (NPN) | Publish Date: 7/23/2021 1:36:04 PM IST

 Unreasonable, dictatorial: NPF

Describing as “unreasonable and dictatorial in nature” the state government’s directive for compulsory vaccination of its employees, the Opposition NPF has advised the state government to follow the mandate laid down by the Court and policies framed by the Centre and review its notification dated July 17, 2021.
NPF through its press bureau stated that eradication or at least minimization of the infection was important, but vaccination cannot be made compulsory. It said that neither imposition of forceful vaccination nor demanding Covid-19 negative test report every 15 days on the expense of employees would go down well with any State since the same was not only a clear violation of human rights challenging Article 14 & 21 of the Indian Constitution, but also a contempt of court.
Asserting that asserted COVID-19 vaccination was voluntary, the opposition party said the same was validated by the Union Health Ministry and the binding precedents of the Supreme Court of India.
Citing the judgments of the Mizoram High Court and Meghalaya High Court, the NPF said they were also clear illustrations that COVID-19 vaccination was purely voluntarily. “COVID-19 vaccination is not mandatory and as such, no one can be forced, coerced, lured, or pressurized to take the vaccine,” NPF stated.
Further, opposition party said that imposing forceful vaccination on its employees by the state government could only be seen as a deliberate abuse of power.
It said that no citizen of the state could be subjected to medical or scientific experimentation without his free consent. 
Unethical & inconsiderate: NPP
State National People’s Party (NPP) unit expressed dismay at the “unreasonable and unethical” directive issued by the state government making Covid vaccination compulsory for all its employees and school and college staff, along with making submission of negative test reports every 15 days at their own expenses mandatory. 
In a statement, the party clarified that while it appreciated the efforts of the State government in combating Covid-19 pandemic and keep the public safe, it was opposed to the directives.
NPP said this showed how inconsiderate the State government was and wondered how the people would be able to afford Covid tests every 15 days when price hike was already taking a heavy toll on them.
It questioned the government that if it was so much concerned for the people, why it did not make Covid-19 tests free for everyone. It added that the order also threatened to stop salary of every employee with effect from July 1. 
The party also questioned the government on majority of the people who have not been vaccinated and yet were moving about freely in the streets. 
NPP Nagaland said it considered the order as a direct challenge to Article 21 of Indian constitution that enshrined Right to Life and Personal Liberty and contempt of Supreme Court of India’s recent judgment on a Meghalaya High Court’s order by chief justice Biswanath Somadder and justice Justice H.S. Thangkhiew and therefore demanded its immediate withdrawal. 
It also appealed to the State government to look for an alternative way of conducting offices, schools and colleges without hampering daily works. 
Reminding the State government that India was a democratic country and not under any authoritarian law, NPP admitted that it was undeniable at this juncture that vaccine was the need of the hour. It, however, pointed out that the government could only encourage every citizen to vaccinate themselves, rather than coercing them.

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