On 13th July 2021, in the case of Osbert Khaling v. State of Manipur; & 2 ors., The Manipur High Court observed that denial of providing livelihood and employment in the name of getting them vaccinated is an illegal act. The court explained that restraining un-vaccinated people to open their organisations, institutions, shops and etc. will infringe their right to livelihood, be it any sort of employment Government or Private sector, and thus will be held as illegal on the part of State.
The court said that this order will also cover people employed under NREGA scheme. Also the court observed that the said notification on the prima facie was an attempt to make the vaccination compulsory, as it mainly focuses on prioritising of opening of those institutions whose workers or owner are vaccinated thereof. The notification also linked the government sector too with the employment under NREGA too. The court stated that the notification of State Government was in accordance with the guidelines issued by the Central Government, as it promotes COVID vaccination in state.
Thus in the light of the same, the Manipur High Court observed that the provisions under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution supports right to health as a fundamental right of a person, thus COVID 19 vaccination comes under the purview of right to health. But also forcing people to get vaccinated or coercing people to get vaccinated is against the very fundamental purpose of the same. If the vaccination is made mandate by coercive methods then it will affect and infringe the right to livelihood which make it possible for a person to live.
– Animesh Raizada, Intern, POSH at Work