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Pakistan’s Parliament passes resolution for free Covid-19 vaccine to public

ISLAMABAD – The Senate has adopted a resolution for the provision of a free-of-cost coronavirus vaccine on Monday.

A resolution was passed in the upper house with a majority which was presented by JUI’s Kamran Murtaza regarding the provision of the COVID-19 vaccine at its original price or free-of-cost for all the citizens.

The resolution stated that the citizens of all countries are being vaccinated free-of-cost, whereas, Pakistan has capped higher prices for vaccines.

The move violated the Constitution’s Article 38 which defines the provision of basic rights to the citizen by the state. It urged the PTI government to review its decision. 43 members have given their votes in favour of the resolution while 31 senators opposed it.

Last month, the government approved a summary regarding prices of COVID-19 vaccines after a recommendation from the health ministry following approval from the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP). The top health officials suggested a proposal allowing the private sector to import the COVID-19 vaccine.

The ministry recommended the price of two doses of the Russian vaccine be set at Rs 8,449. The packet containing four doses of Sputnik-V is set at Rs 16,560 while 10 and 20 doses would be available at Rs40,555 and Rs 81,110 respectively after approval from the federal cabinet. Meanwhile, the single-shot Chinese Convidencia would cost Rs4,225.

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