According to an article by The Wire Science, it says yes the government has lied to court and provided a detailed analysis with the facts which are discussed here.
The petitioner, Jacob Puliyel, a paediatrician and former member of the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI), had contended, among other things, that the government’s decisions to approve various vaccines hadn’t been transparent and that “relevant data is not always placed before” NTAGI. In his petition, Puliyel had cited the example of The Wire Science’s report on Corbevax that revealed that the government had cleared the vaccine’s use among those aged 12-14 years without the NTAGI’s approval.
The Wire Science’s report had included comments from an extant NTAGI member, Jayaprakash Muliyil, to this effect. However, the Indian government claimed to the Supreme Court that all vaccines had been approved by NTAGI, an ICMR scientist familiar with the matter confirmed to The Wire Science that minutes of NTAGI meetings had never been uploaded on the ICMR site as said by government. Second, both Muliyil and another NTAGI member also confirmed that the body’s top-most panel (in a three-tier setup) had not approved the use of Corbevax among children.
Puliyel, the petitioner, also contended in court that the system for ‘adverse events following immunisation’ (AEFIs) has been dysfunctional in the case of COVID-19 vaccination in India. He called it non-transparent because “investigation done to know the cause of deaths following vaccination was obscure”. Currently, it is only possible to report an AEFI through a helpline number provided on the CoWIN portal. If a vaccinator or district immunisation officer learns of an AEFI, she can also report it through CoWIN. It also said that the Union health ministry website “carries the results of causality assessment of AEFI cases, from which the public can obtain relevant information pertaining to AEFIs”, according to the court’s order. This is not true. There has been no such information on the Union health ministry website (as of May 5, 7:30 am).
Third, the court refused to entertain Puliyel’s request that the primary data from the clinical trials of COVID-19 vaccines be placed in the public domain because doing so would violate the privacy of the trials’ participants. Instead, the court said it was satisfied with the scientific papers of the trials that had been published. However, a lawyer and a member of the ethics committees of various medical research institutions told The Wire Science that “there is no harm in disclosing the primary data. As far as confidentiality of the participants is concerned, it can always be protected by simply anonymising the data.” The primary data refers to a clinical trial’s raw data. Papers published by the trial investigators contain the analyses of this data.
This said, the court also asked the government to release the data from “post-marketing” trials – i.e. trials conducted after a vaccine’s real-world use – of Covishield and Covaxin “without undue delay”.