Madras HC notice to Centre, Serum Institute on plea seeking to declare Covishield unsafe

The petitioner Asif Riaz of Chennai said he had volunteered for the vaccine trial and suffered from several side effects.

Published: 19th February 2021 07:09 PM  |   Last Updated: 19th February 2021 07:09 PM   |  A+A-

A health worker shows the Covishield vaccine (File photo | EPS)

Express News Service

CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Friday ordered notice to the Centre and the Serum Institute of India on a plea to declare the Covishield vaccine of the institute as unsafe. 

The petitioner said that he volunteered for the vaccine trial and suffered from several side effects.

Asif Riaz, a resident of Anna Nagar, moved the plea stating that there was no adverse reaction for the first 10 days after the vaccination. But on 11th October 2020, he woke up with a very severe headache. "I am still not stable, as I often experience trembling of hands, fear, anxiety, trepidation, panic, mood swings, and extreme problems in focusing on work..." stated the petitioner.

The petitioner in November 2020 sent a legal notice to the institute seeking compensation of Rs 5 crore for the severe trauma he underwent. The petitioner also sought the Central government and the ICMR to not approve the vaccine. 

In response, the Serum Institute sent a notice to the petitioner demanding Rs 100 crore compensation for maligning the image of the company.

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The company in its statement earlier had maintained that the petitioner's claim is malicious. "The volunteer was specifically informed by the medical team that the complications he suffered were independent of the vaccine trial he underwent. In spite of specifically being made aware of the same, he still chose to go public and malign the reputation of the company," it added.

In the court, the petitioner also alleged that an Independent Expert Committee constituted by the Drugs Controller of India neither heard him nor physically examined him before it submitted its report, asking the court to form an Expert Committee to go into the issue.

The petitioner appealed to the court to grant an interim injunction restraining the Central government and the Drug Controller of India from continuing administering the Covishield vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute of India to the public pending final disposal of the petition.

Justice Abdul Qudhose, admitting the plea, ordered notices to each of the respondents to file a detailed report by March 26.


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  • Dr T K Gopalan

    Imagine every HC sending notices to the Centre à la MadrasHC on every covid related micromanagement matters on a daily basis. An additional dimension is added to this already hydra headed problem. That is the only result. Let the hon’ble judges ponder.
    8 months ago reply
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