No report cards for Meghalaya kids refusing vaccination

Representational Picture

Shillong (IANS) School students who refuse to go for Measles-Rubella vaccination will not receive their annual examination report cards in Meghalaya's East Khasi Hills district, an official said on Thursday.

The vaccination programme was launched in the state on September 24 amid apprehension among many parents that the injection would make their children ill.

"I have asked the District School Education Officer to instruct all the schools not to publish annual examination results of those students not given Measles-Rubella vaccines and apply the same for new admission," Peter S. Dkhar, the district magistrate of East Khasi Hills, told IANS.

The directive was issued since the Measles-Rubella vaccination campaign in the district was very low as many students refused it in the schools.

Dkhar, who is also the Chairman of District Task Force for Immunisation, said the results would be published only after the parents submit in writing the reason why their children were not allowed to be administered the vaccines.

The Khasi Students' Union and Federation of Khasi Jaintia and Garo People's have expressed their strong opposition to the government's directive saying that it violates the right of students.

Both the pressure groups demanded the revocation of the government's directive.

Nearly 4 lakh of the 13 lakh children between nine months and 15 years of age in Meghalaya have been vaccinated against measles and rubella.

Compared to the 10 districts, East Khasi Hills which is at the centre of the state recorded the lowest percentage of children being vaccinated.

East Jaitia Hills district recorded the highest coverage of 65 per cent followed by West Jaitia Hills at 60.

Health and Family Welfare Minister Alexander Laloo Hek had appealed to the parents not to be scared as the vaccination was to ensure the protection of the children from Measles-Rubella.
 

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