Sharing a picture of his son on Twitter, filmmaker Hansal Mehta questioned India's COVID-19 vaccination drive. "My son Pallava is 25-years-old. He has Downs Syndrome. He has suffered from a near fatal respiratory failure a few years ago. Does he want the vaccine or does he need it?" the filmmaker questioned.
Mehta's remark came a day after the Centre said that the aim of the vaccination drive was to administer the vaccine to those who 'need it and not to those who want it'. The Union Health Ministry had made the statement following demands for opening the vaccination drive for all age groups.
Last week India opened the vaccination drive for those 45 years of age and above, almost three months after starting the mass vaccination drive against COVID-19 on January 16.
In the first phase, all frontline and healthcare workers were eligible to get the jab.
In the second phase, which began on March 1, those above the age of 65 and those over 45 years with comorbidities were eligible to get vaccinated. Among the comorbidities mentioned were severe respiratory disease with hospitalisations in last two years and persons with disabilities due to intellectual disabilities. But, Mehta's son wasn't eligible as he isn't in the requisite age bracket.
The third phase of vaccination drive began on April 1. All those above the age of 45 years can get the vaccine.
Also read: COVID-19 surge: 'Intense' 2nd wave will need more than just vaccine87,077,474 people in India have received at least one dose of the two COVID-19 vaccines approved.