Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Education Department has released a list of teaching and non-teaching staff, who have not taken COVID vaccine on religious grounds in the State.
A total of 1,707 teaching and non-teaching staff had not taken the vaccine, General Education Minister V. Sivankutty said on Saturday after a list was released by the Education Department.
“The list includes 1,495 teachers and 212 non-teaching staff. In LP and UP schools, 1,066 teachers and 212 non-teaching staff were not vaccinated. In High Schools, 1,066 teachers and 189 non-teaching staff have not been vaccinated,” he said.
“In Higher Secondary, 200 teachers and 23 non-teaching staff and in Vocational Higher Secondary, 229 teachers were not vaccinated,” the Minister said.
RT-PCR certificate was made mandatory every week for teachers, non-teaching and other office staff who were not taken the vaccination, he said.
As Omicron strain causing panic across the world, several teachers are hesitant to take COVID vaccine on religious grounds.
Earlier, the Minister said non-vaccination of teachers causes health risk for 47 lakh students and the people in the State, which has over 1.60 lakh teachers and 20,000 non-teaching staff.
“It was noticed that, some teachers are coming to the schools without taking the COVID vaccine. This cannot be justified and supported,” he said.
When a large number of population is cooperating with the vaccination drive, these kind of hesitancy by a section of teachers and non-teaching staff on religious grounds will not be justified, he added.
The State Government will take all possible steps and precautionary measures against the spread of various variants of COVID, Sivankutty clarified.
Earlier, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said, those who are not cooperating with COVID prevention measures will not get free treatment.
Vijayan tweeted that “No more free treatment for those who do not cooperate with COVID prevention measures. Non vaccinated teachers and employees who work from offices or interact with public, will have to submit weekly results of RT-PCR tests, paid by themselves, to ensure safety of all.”
The Chief Minister’s response was followed by various media reports that several thousands of people including teachers are hesitant to take COVID vaccine on religious grounds.