International travel is not directly linked to possession of Covid vaccination certificates and there is no multilateral protocol at present on the travel of vaccinated people, Lok Sabha was informed on Friday.
Due to COVID-19 pandemic, normal international travel services remain suspended. International air travel is taking place through special arrangements, including air bubble and Vande Bharat Mission, Minister of State for Health Bharati Pravin Pawar said in a written reply.
Such travel is not directly linked to the possession of vaccination certificates.
Further, at present, there is no multilateral protocol on the travel of COVID-19 vaccinated people. Most countries require a negative COVID-19 test report, along with compliance with country specific COVID protocols, the minister stated.
“While there have been multilateral discussions, including under the framework of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), regarding COVID-19 vaccination certificates, no multilateral arrangements in this regard have been reached so far.
“India has been part of ongoing discussion to ensure that Indian manufactured vaccines are recognized in any multilateral arrangement. India is also engaging with countries for mutual recognition of vaccination certificates,” the reply stated.
The minister was responding to a question on whether the government has noted that those vaccinated with Covaxin are facing difficulty due to non-approval of WHO and unable to go abroad or are banned to visit many foreign countries for employment or other purposes particularly in European countries and the steps taken or interventions made by the government to resolve the issue including travel ban through diplomatic interventions.
Covaxin at present is not part of WHO Emergency Use Listing (EUL) and is not yet included in the list of approved vaccines for the COVAX vaccine distribution programme, Pawar informed.
All documents required for Emergency Use Listing (EUL) have been submitted by Bharat Biotech International Ltd. (BBIL) to WHO as of July 9.
The WHO will examine the technical data provided by BBIL for taking a final decision on the issue, Pawar said.
In response to a question on total number of COVID-19 deaths that have occurred between January to May post vaccination, Pawar said till July 26, causality assessment for 179 serious and severe adverse events following immunisation cases has been approved by the National AEFI Committee of which only one death case from Maharashtra was found to be associated with COVID-19 vaccine.
This was a case of anaphylaxis which can occur with any medicinal product including vaccines and can be fatal, she said.
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