Watch video: Pondicherry man flees COVID-19 vaccination and climbs tree

A health worker prepares to administer a COVID-19 vaccine.
Image Credit: AP

Pondicherry: A person from a village of Vilianur in Pondicherry climbed a tree to avoid getting the COVID-19 vaccine. The man, who spotted health officials heading towards his house, fled and then climbed the tree to prevent him from getting the vaccine.

The incident happened on Tuesday. Pondicherry health officials say the middle-aged man, whom authorities have not named, climbed to the top of a tree near his home after finding the health team reaching him there -low. He ran away from the house with a machete and then climbed the tree.

Health officials said he was trying to stage a drama of pruning the branches of the tree with a machete, but authorities told him to come down and get vaccinated.

When asked by team members if he had taken the vaccine, he said no and challenged health officials to climb the tree and administer the vaccine.

An old woman and her family had prevented health workers including Asha’s agents from not getting the vaccine after performing a drama as if they were possessed by the spirit of a goddess “Mariyathai” and made run away from health volunteers.

These incidents left the health authorities in Pondicherry red, as it was a clear indicator that people are still not aware of the benefits of vaccination. The refusal of the population is considered to be the major failure of the Pondicherry health service to properly instill in society the benefit of vaccination.

Floyd N. Morlan