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Health Rule of Law

K’taka HC directs Centre to increase state’s oxygen quota

The court has given two days’ time to the Centre to reconsider allocation of Remdesivir drug to the state

Sabrangindia 06 May 2021

KarnatakaImage: PTI

 

The Karnataka High Court has directed the Centre to increase oxygen allocation to Karnataka to 1200MT with immediate effect. On May 4, the bench of Chief Justice Abhay Oka and Justice Aravind Kumar had given notice to the Centre that it will be passing such orders.

The court, with due regard to grave situation faced by the state, where already two incidents had occurred, reportedly, due to shortage of oxygen. The court stated that it had no option but to issue a mandatory direction to consider the consider the state’s requisition made on April 30 and meanwhile directed the state to submit a fresh representation on requirement for the 7 days. The court has directed to increase the allocation to 1200MT on ad hoc basis until the Centre reconsiders its decision.

The court stated that depending upon the Centre’s decision and the state’s representation, the court will pass orders accordingly in the next week. LiveLaw reported that the court also stressed upon the urgency of the matter, “The reason being there are a number of reported incidents in the state of death of covid-19 affected patients due to lack of availability of Oxygen. For upholding rights under Article 21 of Constitution this is the minimum requirement to be complied with by the state."

The Centre had increased the state’s allocation basis its representation made on April 30, from 802MT to 865 MT and after the court’s notice on May 4, the allocation was increased to 965MT.

The court also questioned the Centre why no buffer stock was created even after Supreme Court’s directions. "Scenario that emerges is such that notwithstanding the facts and figures, not only no buffer stock is created for the state of Karnataka, but minimum requirement is also not met with. We must note here that Bengaluru city has had the highest number of cases in the country for the last several days,” LiveLaw reported the bench saying.

Remdesevir allocation

The Centre informed the court that decision on reconsideration of Remdesivir allocation to Karnataka will be taken within two days. The court had observed on May 4 that the state had mentioned that requirement was of 35,000 vials per day, but Centre had made allocation of about 15,800 vials per day.

Further, the court directed the state government to put in place helpline number for people in Bengaluru urban district considering the rising number of cases.

Inquiry in deaths due to oxygen shortage

The court has directed the Chief Secretary to seize the records of the hospital in Chamarajnagar where 24 covid patients died between May 3 and May 4. The court has also directed seizure of records pertaining to oxygen supply with Deputy Commissioner Chamarajnagar as well as Mysuru.

When the Advocate General informed the court that the cabinet had ordered an inquiry headed by a Judge, the court responded that the choice of judge should be left up to the court. “You cannot pre-judge a matter like this,” the bench reportedly said.

The Court was inclined towards having the incident inquired into by Committee appointed by the Karnataka State Legal Services Authority headed by a retired judge.
 

The case will next be heard on May 6.

Related:

Karnataka HC slams Centre for not increasing oxygen quota despite state’s request

Death of Covid patients due to oxygen shortage is not less than genocide: Allahabad HC

Did Gujarat get preference over other states in Covid vaccination for 18-44 year olds?

K’taka HC directs Centre to increase state’s oxygen quota

The court has given two days’ time to the Centre to reconsider allocation of Remdesivir drug to the state

KarnatakaImage: PTI

 

The Karnataka High Court has directed the Centre to increase oxygen allocation to Karnataka to 1200MT with immediate effect. On May 4, the bench of Chief Justice Abhay Oka and Justice Aravind Kumar had given notice to the Centre that it will be passing such orders.

The court, with due regard to grave situation faced by the state, where already two incidents had occurred, reportedly, due to shortage of oxygen. The court stated that it had no option but to issue a mandatory direction to consider the consider the state’s requisition made on April 30 and meanwhile directed the state to submit a fresh representation on requirement for the 7 days. The court has directed to increase the allocation to 1200MT on ad hoc basis until the Centre reconsiders its decision.

The court stated that depending upon the Centre’s decision and the state’s representation, the court will pass orders accordingly in the next week. LiveLaw reported that the court also stressed upon the urgency of the matter, “The reason being there are a number of reported incidents in the state of death of covid-19 affected patients due to lack of availability of Oxygen. For upholding rights under Article 21 of Constitution this is the minimum requirement to be complied with by the state."

The Centre had increased the state’s allocation basis its representation made on April 30, from 802MT to 865 MT and after the court’s notice on May 4, the allocation was increased to 965MT.

The court also questioned the Centre why no buffer stock was created even after Supreme Court’s directions. "Scenario that emerges is such that notwithstanding the facts and figures, not only no buffer stock is created for the state of Karnataka, but minimum requirement is also not met with. We must note here that Bengaluru city has had the highest number of cases in the country for the last several days,” LiveLaw reported the bench saying.

Remdesevir allocation

The Centre informed the court that decision on reconsideration of Remdesivir allocation to Karnataka will be taken within two days. The court had observed on May 4 that the state had mentioned that requirement was of 35,000 vials per day, but Centre had made allocation of about 15,800 vials per day.

Further, the court directed the state government to put in place helpline number for people in Bengaluru urban district considering the rising number of cases.

Inquiry in deaths due to oxygen shortage

The court has directed the Chief Secretary to seize the records of the hospital in Chamarajnagar where 24 covid patients died between May 3 and May 4. The court has also directed seizure of records pertaining to oxygen supply with Deputy Commissioner Chamarajnagar as well as Mysuru.

When the Advocate General informed the court that the cabinet had ordered an inquiry headed by a Judge, the court responded that the choice of judge should be left up to the court. “You cannot pre-judge a matter like this,” the bench reportedly said.

The Court was inclined towards having the incident inquired into by Committee appointed by the Karnataka State Legal Services Authority headed by a retired judge.
 

The case will next be heard on May 6.

Related:

Karnataka HC slams Centre for not increasing oxygen quota despite state’s request

Death of Covid patients due to oxygen shortage is not less than genocide: Allahabad HC

Did Gujarat get preference over other states in Covid vaccination for 18-44 year olds?

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