J&K government came under heavy fire over a controversial order that mandated persons above 45 years to get themselves vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to be eligible to receive government ration. The order, issued by the Assistant Director, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs, Bandipora, was issued earlier in the day, but revoked hours later.
In the said order, it was clearly mentioned that "without producing COVID-19 vaccination certificate, ration will not be issued in any case." Naturally, the order did not sit well with the people as the harsh move was contrary to how the vaccination drive was working across the country.
Few hours later, the assistant director issued another order that canceled the previous one.
"The public notice...wherein it was inadvertently made mandatory for persons aged 45 and above to vaccinate themselves against COVID-19 for the collection of ration, is hereby withdrawn ab-initio," the assistant director signed order was released.
However, the assistant director requested eligible persons to get vaccinated and follow all the mandatory COVID-19 SOPs to fight the virus. The centre allowed people aged 45 and above to get vaccinated against COVID-19 April 1 onwards. Since then, the centre has administered the first dose to crores of people across various states.
COVID surge in J&K
The controversial order came at the heels of surge in COVID cases in J&K. In the last 24 hours, 442 new cases and 2 deaths were reported in the valley. Due to the upsurge in COVID infection, authorities issued an order cancelling all leaves granted to doctors and paramedics and asked them to report to their places of posting with immediate effect.
The number of active cases in J&K now stands at 4,154, of which 1,024 are from Jammu and the remaining from Kashmir. In total, 133,454 people have been infected by the virus and 2,010 have succumbed.