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State did not pay heed to Covid second wave warnings: Uttarakhand HC

The court expressed its displeasure at the government’s vague affidavit and lack of planning

11 May 2021

Image Courtesy:livelaw.in

The Uttarakhand High Court has berated the government for not being adequately prepared and ignoring the scientific community’s warning about the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic

Bar & Bench reported that the Bench of Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan and Justice Alok Kumar Verma said, “The scientific community warned that the second wave of Covid-19 would hit. Unfortunately, the State did not heed the warnings... Even though the State has been reeling under the pandemic for the last one and a half years, there seems to be a lack of planning by the State to deal with the pandemic.”

In the previous hearing, the High Court had directed Amit Negi, the Secretary of Medical Health and Family Welfare, to submit a report on detailed steps taken by the government to implement the directions of the court and also manage the pandemic by May 7.

During yesterday’s hearing, the court criticised the report submitted by Mr. Negi and observed, “In places, the affidavit has been drafted very cleverly so as to scuttle this Court’s previous orders...Most basic facts have not been brought on record. Affidavit is highly vague. Although it is claimed that there are 36 private labs, neither their names nor locations have been submitted in annexures.”

The court also rejected the submission made by the government that the state's measures to protect the right to health was subject to financial limitations. According to LiveLaw, the Chief Justice told Advocate General SN Babulkar, “In case of calamity and disaster, the state cannot raise the defence of financial limitations. State cannot say that it does not have funds. The last penny in the exchequer must be devoted to protect the lives of people...Government being the father figure of all of us, must come forward and assure the citizens that they will be protected. That is the attitude the government should have.”

The Bench reiterated that it is the State’s obligation and foremost duty to protect the lives of the people.

Further, the court reportedly passed the following directions for the State government to follow:

1. Increase the number of testing labs, especially in Haridwar. In case the number of labs cannot be increased, the State should immediately take steps for dispersing mobile testing vans. In the previous order dated April 28, the court had issued a similar direction that the number of samples that need to be taken in the large cities like Dehradun, Haridwar and Haldwani should be increased to anywhere between 30,000-50,000 per day.

2. State should consider turning colleges and hotels into isolation/quarantine centres.

3. Since there is shortage of oxygen tanks, the State should seek permission of the Centre to use oxygen produced within the State rather than being asked to transport tanks from Jharkhand and West Bengal.

4. Court had issued directions to fill vacancies in doctors and nurse positions. State must endeavour to fill these positions. Two CT scans should be installed in every government hospital.

5. Although Char Dham Yatra has been suspended, the government must ensure that it is adhered to strictly. Steps for implementation of SOPs should be worked out immediately between temple management and State.

Towards the end of the hearing, the Advocate General asked for more time to file an affidavit in this regard, reported Bar & Bench. The Chief Justice took exception to this and remarked, “Frankly speaking, we are not happy with the way the government is dealing with the situation...I am not going to buy the excuse that so many people are ill and therefore the work cannot be done. They are ill because of your shortcomings.”

The matter will now be heard on May 18.

Related:

Increase Covid testing, cremation facilities: Uttarakhand HC issues directions
Can’t let Char Dham yatra become hotspot, Uttarakhand HC takes stock of Covid preparedness
Kumbh Mela: Over 25,000 devotees and 1,000 seers participate in Shahi Snan

State did not pay heed to Covid second wave warnings: Uttarakhand HC

The court expressed its displeasure at the government’s vague affidavit and lack of planning

Image Courtesy:livelaw.in

The Uttarakhand High Court has berated the government for not being adequately prepared and ignoring the scientific community’s warning about the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic

Bar & Bench reported that the Bench of Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan and Justice Alok Kumar Verma said, “The scientific community warned that the second wave of Covid-19 would hit. Unfortunately, the State did not heed the warnings... Even though the State has been reeling under the pandemic for the last one and a half years, there seems to be a lack of planning by the State to deal with the pandemic.”

In the previous hearing, the High Court had directed Amit Negi, the Secretary of Medical Health and Family Welfare, to submit a report on detailed steps taken by the government to implement the directions of the court and also manage the pandemic by May 7.

During yesterday’s hearing, the court criticised the report submitted by Mr. Negi and observed, “In places, the affidavit has been drafted very cleverly so as to scuttle this Court’s previous orders...Most basic facts have not been brought on record. Affidavit is highly vague. Although it is claimed that there are 36 private labs, neither their names nor locations have been submitted in annexures.”

The court also rejected the submission made by the government that the state's measures to protect the right to health was subject to financial limitations. According to LiveLaw, the Chief Justice told Advocate General SN Babulkar, “In case of calamity and disaster, the state cannot raise the defence of financial limitations. State cannot say that it does not have funds. The last penny in the exchequer must be devoted to protect the lives of people...Government being the father figure of all of us, must come forward and assure the citizens that they will be protected. That is the attitude the government should have.”

The Bench reiterated that it is the State’s obligation and foremost duty to protect the lives of the people.

Further, the court reportedly passed the following directions for the State government to follow:

1. Increase the number of testing labs, especially in Haridwar. In case the number of labs cannot be increased, the State should immediately take steps for dispersing mobile testing vans. In the previous order dated April 28, the court had issued a similar direction that the number of samples that need to be taken in the large cities like Dehradun, Haridwar and Haldwani should be increased to anywhere between 30,000-50,000 per day.

2. State should consider turning colleges and hotels into isolation/quarantine centres.

3. Since there is shortage of oxygen tanks, the State should seek permission of the Centre to use oxygen produced within the State rather than being asked to transport tanks from Jharkhand and West Bengal.

4. Court had issued directions to fill vacancies in doctors and nurse positions. State must endeavour to fill these positions. Two CT scans should be installed in every government hospital.

5. Although Char Dham Yatra has been suspended, the government must ensure that it is adhered to strictly. Steps for implementation of SOPs should be worked out immediately between temple management and State.

Towards the end of the hearing, the Advocate General asked for more time to file an affidavit in this regard, reported Bar & Bench. The Chief Justice took exception to this and remarked, “Frankly speaking, we are not happy with the way the government is dealing with the situation...I am not going to buy the excuse that so many people are ill and therefore the work cannot be done. They are ill because of your shortcomings.”

The matter will now be heard on May 18.

Related:

Increase Covid testing, cremation facilities: Uttarakhand HC issues directions
Can’t let Char Dham yatra become hotspot, Uttarakhand HC takes stock of Covid preparedness
Kumbh Mela: Over 25,000 devotees and 1,000 seers participate in Shahi Snan

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Delhi HC seeks procedure of deportation of foreign nationals found without documents

The court has also asked the Union Home Ministry to inform the court of time period and formalities in this regard

11 May 2021

Image Courtesy:business-standard.com

The Delhi High Court has asked the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to inform the court of the procedure to be followed to repatriate foreign nationals, who do not have any documentary proof of their native country. The bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh was dealing with a petition filed by 3 Bangladeshi nationals housed in shelter home in Delhi.

The Kamla Market Police Station informed the court that the 3 petitioners were could not provide any documentary proof in their support but they claim to be Bangladesh citizens and also informed that they do not have any criminal antecedents. The police station has also sent a request letter for deportation to Bangladeshi High Commission.

The court took notice of these submissions and directed the MHA to place on record:

(i) The procedure to be adopted in such cases where no documentary evidence exists in respect of the nationality of a foreign national;

(ii) The procedure for repatriation/deportation of such foreign nationals; and

(iii) If such a procedure exists, the time period and formalities to be completed for the same.

The court has directed MHA to file an affidavit in this regard by May 13. The case will next be heard on May 17.

The order may be read here:

Related:

Covid lockdown: Over 150 academicians voice migrant workers’ demands
Manipur: CCM applauds HC order allowing safe passage to Myanmar refugees
We want to serve humanity: Rohingya refugees offer help amidst Covid

Delhi HC seeks procedure of deportation of foreign nationals found without documents

The court has also asked the Union Home Ministry to inform the court of time period and formalities in this regard

Image Courtesy:business-standard.com

The Delhi High Court has asked the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to inform the court of the procedure to be followed to repatriate foreign nationals, who do not have any documentary proof of their native country. The bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh was dealing with a petition filed by 3 Bangladeshi nationals housed in shelter home in Delhi.

The Kamla Market Police Station informed the court that the 3 petitioners were could not provide any documentary proof in their support but they claim to be Bangladesh citizens and also informed that they do not have any criminal antecedents. The police station has also sent a request letter for deportation to Bangladeshi High Commission.

The court took notice of these submissions and directed the MHA to place on record:

(i) The procedure to be adopted in such cases where no documentary evidence exists in respect of the nationality of a foreign national;

(ii) The procedure for repatriation/deportation of such foreign nationals; and

(iii) If such a procedure exists, the time period and formalities to be completed for the same.

The court has directed MHA to file an affidavit in this regard by May 13. The case will next be heard on May 17.

The order may be read here:

Related:

Covid lockdown: Over 150 academicians voice migrant workers’ demands
Manipur: CCM applauds HC order allowing safe passage to Myanmar refugees
We want to serve humanity: Rohingya refugees offer help amidst Covid

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Drastic surge in Covid-19 cases, Himachal Pradesh HC issues directions

The court took note of the grim situation in the state with no medical facilities and resources to combat the rising cases

10 May 2021

Image Courtesy:livelaw.in

The Himachal Pradesh High Court has issued a set of directions to contain the spread of coronavirus, after noting that the state has witnessed a “drastic surge” in infections, with the highest fatality rate in the country.

Justices Tarlok Singh Chauhan and Justice Chander Bhusan Barowalia were dealing with a plea filed in connection with the lack of oxygen facilities and non-operational ventilators when it decided to expand the scope of it to the entire state regarding Covid management.

The Division Bench took note of the present situation in the state where infection cases have spread to not only urban but rural areas too. It observed that many deaths have been reported during the past few days from various parts of the state due to acute shortage of oxygen and medicines. There is also no system in place to comprehend how many normal beds, ICUs and ventilators are available in government and private hospitals.

RT-PCR test results are delayed and, in the meantime, if a patient dies, the body is handed over to the family members and cremation in such cases is not being conducted as per established Covid protocols.

Senior Advocate BN Mishra, for the petitioner, also submitted that only the rich and influential are being admitted to hospitals where there is availability of oxygen and some lifesaving drugs, while those belonging to the middle class, poor and below poverty line families are left without treatment.

He also told the court that the State Government is being discriminated against by the Central Government with regard to supply of drugs like Remdesivir, Favipiravir and Tocilizumab. Recently, only 3,000 vials have been allocated to the State Government, whereas, those states having lesser populations and far lesser Covid-19 cases have been supplied a far greater number of vials.

Directions

In light of these developments, the court has issued the following directions to the State:

1. Increase the number of authorized laboratories/clinics/hospitals which can carry on the testing for a larger percentage of population.

2. Increase the number of testing being done in the bigger towns of the State. The State Government should consider the use of other kits, besides the Rapid Antigen Kit, or the RT PCR tests, for increasing the tests being carried out on a daily basis.

3. In order to increase the testing facilities in the hill districts of the State, the State Government should consider sending ‘mobile vans’ which are fully equipped for carrying out the testing of Covid-19 virus.

4. The State should increase the number of dedicated Covid Hospitals. For, merely having few dedicated Covid hospitals, is too little to tackle the menace, especially when the pandemic is likely to spread and increase throughout the State in the coming months.

5. The State is directed to increase the number of beds available in the hospitals. It shall ensure that the majority of the beds are equipped with Oxygen tanks and sufficient numbers of beds are equipped with ventilators. If necessary, the number of ICUs in the hospitals should be increased.

6. The State Government is directed to ensure that the PPE kits and other protective gear, such as gloves, masks, and sanitizer are provided to all the medical staff, especially to the Doctors, Nurses, Ward boys to look after Covid patients.

7. The State Government is directed to publish the names and locations of the testing centres, and the names and locations of Hospitals/Dedicated COVID-19 Health Care Centres in the media bulletin on a daily basis. The media bulletin should clearly indicate the total number of beds available in each hospital/Dedicated COVID19 Health Care Centres, and the number of vacant beds available in each hospital. It should also indicate the class of the beds i.e. the number of beds attached with ventilators, number of beds attached with Oxygen cylinders and the number of beds without any Oxygen tank/ Cylinder.

The state has also been directed to furnish information about vacant beds for Covid patients, oxygen supply, a plan under the Disaster Management Act to tackle the Covid-19 cases, and steps taken to ensure the availability of essential drugs including Remdesivir, Favipiravir and Tocilizumab.

The order may be read here: 

Related:

Char Dham Yatra suspended amidst rising Covid cases
Did a BJP worker give 'Gau Mutra' to a Covid-19 patient on a ventilator?
We need to breathe!
IMA slams Union Health Ministry for failing to curb Covid-19

Drastic surge in Covid-19 cases, Himachal Pradesh HC issues directions

The court took note of the grim situation in the state with no medical facilities and resources to combat the rising cases

Image Courtesy:livelaw.in

The Himachal Pradesh High Court has issued a set of directions to contain the spread of coronavirus, after noting that the state has witnessed a “drastic surge” in infections, with the highest fatality rate in the country.

Justices Tarlok Singh Chauhan and Justice Chander Bhusan Barowalia were dealing with a plea filed in connection with the lack of oxygen facilities and non-operational ventilators when it decided to expand the scope of it to the entire state regarding Covid management.

The Division Bench took note of the present situation in the state where infection cases have spread to not only urban but rural areas too. It observed that many deaths have been reported during the past few days from various parts of the state due to acute shortage of oxygen and medicines. There is also no system in place to comprehend how many normal beds, ICUs and ventilators are available in government and private hospitals.

RT-PCR test results are delayed and, in the meantime, if a patient dies, the body is handed over to the family members and cremation in such cases is not being conducted as per established Covid protocols.

Senior Advocate BN Mishra, for the petitioner, also submitted that only the rich and influential are being admitted to hospitals where there is availability of oxygen and some lifesaving drugs, while those belonging to the middle class, poor and below poverty line families are left without treatment.

He also told the court that the State Government is being discriminated against by the Central Government with regard to supply of drugs like Remdesivir, Favipiravir and Tocilizumab. Recently, only 3,000 vials have been allocated to the State Government, whereas, those states having lesser populations and far lesser Covid-19 cases have been supplied a far greater number of vials.

Directions

In light of these developments, the court has issued the following directions to the State:

1. Increase the number of authorized laboratories/clinics/hospitals which can carry on the testing for a larger percentage of population.

2. Increase the number of testing being done in the bigger towns of the State. The State Government should consider the use of other kits, besides the Rapid Antigen Kit, or the RT PCR tests, for increasing the tests being carried out on a daily basis.

3. In order to increase the testing facilities in the hill districts of the State, the State Government should consider sending ‘mobile vans’ which are fully equipped for carrying out the testing of Covid-19 virus.

4. The State should increase the number of dedicated Covid Hospitals. For, merely having few dedicated Covid hospitals, is too little to tackle the menace, especially when the pandemic is likely to spread and increase throughout the State in the coming months.

5. The State is directed to increase the number of beds available in the hospitals. It shall ensure that the majority of the beds are equipped with Oxygen tanks and sufficient numbers of beds are equipped with ventilators. If necessary, the number of ICUs in the hospitals should be increased.

6. The State Government is directed to ensure that the PPE kits and other protective gear, such as gloves, masks, and sanitizer are provided to all the medical staff, especially to the Doctors, Nurses, Ward boys to look after Covid patients.

7. The State Government is directed to publish the names and locations of the testing centres, and the names and locations of Hospitals/Dedicated COVID-19 Health Care Centres in the media bulletin on a daily basis. The media bulletin should clearly indicate the total number of beds available in each hospital/Dedicated COVID19 Health Care Centres, and the number of vacant beds available in each hospital. It should also indicate the class of the beds i.e. the number of beds attached with ventilators, number of beds attached with Oxygen cylinders and the number of beds without any Oxygen tank/ Cylinder.

The state has also been directed to furnish information about vacant beds for Covid patients, oxygen supply, a plan under the Disaster Management Act to tackle the Covid-19 cases, and steps taken to ensure the availability of essential drugs including Remdesivir, Favipiravir and Tocilizumab.

The order may be read here: 

Related:

Char Dham Yatra suspended amidst rising Covid cases
Did a BJP worker give 'Gau Mutra' to a Covid-19 patient on a ventilator?
We need to breathe!
IMA slams Union Health Ministry for failing to curb Covid-19

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Pvt Hospital allegedly charges Rs. 1 lakh per day for Covid treatment: Madras HC seeks response from gov’t

The court stringently observed that some private hospitals are taking advantage of this crisis and charging exorbitant prices

10 May 2021

Image Courtesy:deccanherald.com

The High Court has sought a detailed response from the state government and the Centre over allegations of exorbitant and unreasonable price being charged by private hospitals, in contravention of the government order that has fixed the maximum cost to be charged for Covid-19 treatment.

The petitioner approached the court stating that private hospitals are charging exorbitantly upto Rs.2,00,000 for ten days of treatment. The hospitals, depending upon their grade, can charge up to Rs. 15,000 per day, but some hospitals are allegedly charging around Rs.1,00,000 per day.

Further, it was stated that by way of an order, the Government had directed the private clinical establishments to allocate minimum 50 percent of the total bed capacity for treating Covid-19 patients, since this was declared an international health emergency. However, the petitioner submitted that private hospitals were not providing beds as directed in the Government Order and there was no proper mechanism available for implementation of the Government orders.

Court’s observation

Justices MS Ramesh and B. Pugalendhi, at the outset, appreciated the valuable services rendered by the doctors, nurses, health workers and all other frontline workers during this unprecedented crisis.

At the same time, it perused some receipts provided by the petitioner and said, “exorbitant charges have been collected by some hospitals, even during this difficult time, which cannot be permitted. The hospitals are taking advantage of the Covid-19 Pandemic situation, it appears, making use of it to collect exorbitant charges.”

Accordingly, the court has sought the following details from the Centre and State government:

1. Whether the Government Orders from the Health and Family Welfare Department are strictly complied with in its letter and spirit?

2. How is the Government monitoring the implementation of the aforesaid Government Orders?

3. Whether the maximum cost for Covid-19 treatment as directed by the Government in the aforesaid Government Orders is exhibited in a prominent manner in the private hospitals enabling the general public to know about the charges and the details of the authority to whom any complaint regarding the exorbitant charges and violations of the said Government Orders, can be lodged?

4. What is the penal provision or penalty contemplated for violation of the aforesaid Government Orders and who is the authority monitoring the implementation of the aforesaid Government Orders?

5. How many complaints have been received by the Government for violation of the said Government Orders and what is the action taken on the complaints, if any?

6. Why not the Government maintain a separate portal giving the availability of the private hospitals and their bed capacity along with the fees structure in the portal, as maintained by Uttar Pradesh and Delhi, etc.

7. The Government Order mentions that the beneficiaries under the Chief Minister’s Comprehensive Health Insurance Scheme are covered in the empanelled private hospitals and if so, how many persons have been treated under the scheme so far.

8. Whether under the Tamil Nadu Employees Health Insurance Scheme, the Government servants are entitled to take treatment for Covid-19 in the private hospitals?

The matter will be heard on May 12.

The order may be read here: 

Related:

All you need to know about Mucormycosis
Covid-19 has completely exposed Delhi’s medical infrastructure: High Court
Will Union Minister Santosh Gangwar’s letter to UP Chief Minister exposing O2 shortage, make a difference?
Allahabad HC not satisfied with DM Meerut’s response over oxygen shortage

Pvt Hospital allegedly charges Rs. 1 lakh per day for Covid treatment: Madras HC seeks response from gov’t

The court stringently observed that some private hospitals are taking advantage of this crisis and charging exorbitant prices

Image Courtesy:deccanherald.com

The High Court has sought a detailed response from the state government and the Centre over allegations of exorbitant and unreasonable price being charged by private hospitals, in contravention of the government order that has fixed the maximum cost to be charged for Covid-19 treatment.

The petitioner approached the court stating that private hospitals are charging exorbitantly upto Rs.2,00,000 for ten days of treatment. The hospitals, depending upon their grade, can charge up to Rs. 15,000 per day, but some hospitals are allegedly charging around Rs.1,00,000 per day.

Further, it was stated that by way of an order, the Government had directed the private clinical establishments to allocate minimum 50 percent of the total bed capacity for treating Covid-19 patients, since this was declared an international health emergency. However, the petitioner submitted that private hospitals were not providing beds as directed in the Government Order and there was no proper mechanism available for implementation of the Government orders.

Court’s observation

Justices MS Ramesh and B. Pugalendhi, at the outset, appreciated the valuable services rendered by the doctors, nurses, health workers and all other frontline workers during this unprecedented crisis.

At the same time, it perused some receipts provided by the petitioner and said, “exorbitant charges have been collected by some hospitals, even during this difficult time, which cannot be permitted. The hospitals are taking advantage of the Covid-19 Pandemic situation, it appears, making use of it to collect exorbitant charges.”

Accordingly, the court has sought the following details from the Centre and State government:

1. Whether the Government Orders from the Health and Family Welfare Department are strictly complied with in its letter and spirit?

2. How is the Government monitoring the implementation of the aforesaid Government Orders?

3. Whether the maximum cost for Covid-19 treatment as directed by the Government in the aforesaid Government Orders is exhibited in a prominent manner in the private hospitals enabling the general public to know about the charges and the details of the authority to whom any complaint regarding the exorbitant charges and violations of the said Government Orders, can be lodged?

4. What is the penal provision or penalty contemplated for violation of the aforesaid Government Orders and who is the authority monitoring the implementation of the aforesaid Government Orders?

5. How many complaints have been received by the Government for violation of the said Government Orders and what is the action taken on the complaints, if any?

6. Why not the Government maintain a separate portal giving the availability of the private hospitals and their bed capacity along with the fees structure in the portal, as maintained by Uttar Pradesh and Delhi, etc.

7. The Government Order mentions that the beneficiaries under the Chief Minister’s Comprehensive Health Insurance Scheme are covered in the empanelled private hospitals and if so, how many persons have been treated under the scheme so far.

8. Whether under the Tamil Nadu Employees Health Insurance Scheme, the Government servants are entitled to take treatment for Covid-19 in the private hospitals?

The matter will be heard on May 12.

The order may be read here: 

Related:

All you need to know about Mucormycosis
Covid-19 has completely exposed Delhi’s medical infrastructure: High Court
Will Union Minister Santosh Gangwar’s letter to UP Chief Minister exposing O2 shortage, make a difference?
Allahabad HC not satisfied with DM Meerut’s response over oxygen shortage

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Breaking: Natasha Narwal gets interim bail to attend last rites of father

Dr. Mahavir Narwal passed away on May 9 due to Covid, while Natasha’s bail plea for order was pending

10 May 2021

Image Courtesy:livelaw.in

A Division Bench comprising of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Anup J. Bhambhani has granted interim bail of three weeks to Natasha Narwal to attend the last rites of her deceased father, Dr. Mahavir Narwal who succumbed to Covid-19 yesterday, on May 9.

Natasha, who has been in jail for over a year, facing under the draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) charges for her alleged role in the Delhi violence case of 2020, had approached the Delhi High Court for bail to look after her diabetic father who tested positive for the virus. The order was reserved on April 28.

During the proceedings today as per  LiveLaw tweet, Justice Mridul asked if there was any member in the Narwal family who could cremate Late Dr. Mahavir. To this, Advocate Adit S Pujari said, “There is no one, your lordships. Her mother passed away 15 years ago. Her brother is down with Covid.”

The Bench also noted that her father’s body is waiting at Rohtak hospital, Haryana to be claimed and that the State does not oppose the relief prayed by Natasha Nawal.

Accordingly, she has been directed to be released on a personal bond of Rs.50,000 for a period of three weeks and is expected to surrender before the jail authorities by providing a copy of her RTPCR test report.

Related:

Dr Mahavir Narwal, father of jailed anti-CAA activist Natasha Narwal, dies of Covid
SC orders re-release of prisoners from jail amid Covid-19 surge

Breaking: Natasha Narwal gets interim bail to attend last rites of father

Dr. Mahavir Narwal passed away on May 9 due to Covid, while Natasha’s bail plea for order was pending

Image Courtesy:livelaw.in

A Division Bench comprising of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Anup J. Bhambhani has granted interim bail of three weeks to Natasha Narwal to attend the last rites of her deceased father, Dr. Mahavir Narwal who succumbed to Covid-19 yesterday, on May 9.

Natasha, who has been in jail for over a year, facing under the draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) charges for her alleged role in the Delhi violence case of 2020, had approached the Delhi High Court for bail to look after her diabetic father who tested positive for the virus. The order was reserved on April 28.

During the proceedings today as per  LiveLaw tweet, Justice Mridul asked if there was any member in the Narwal family who could cremate Late Dr. Mahavir. To this, Advocate Adit S Pujari said, “There is no one, your lordships. Her mother passed away 15 years ago. Her brother is down with Covid.”

The Bench also noted that her father’s body is waiting at Rohtak hospital, Haryana to be claimed and that the State does not oppose the relief prayed by Natasha Nawal.

Accordingly, she has been directed to be released on a personal bond of Rs.50,000 for a period of three weeks and is expected to surrender before the jail authorities by providing a copy of her RTPCR test report.

Related:

Dr Mahavir Narwal, father of jailed anti-CAA activist Natasha Narwal, dies of Covid
SC orders re-release of prisoners from jail amid Covid-19 surge

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Former Calcutta HC judge, DK Basu, passes away

He was also the petitioner in the groundbreaking DK Basu case, that laid down guidelines to prevent custodial torture

10 May 2021

Image Courtesy:livelaw.in

Justice DK Basu, the petitioner in the landmark case DK Basu vs State of Bengal (1997), and a retired Calcutta High Court judge breathed his last on May 9.

Justice Basu practiced at the Supreme Court, till he was elevated as a judge of the Calcutta High Court in 1987. He had also served as the Chairman of Legal Aid Services West Bengal (LASWEB) and as the Chairman of the National Committee for Legal Aid Services India.

He had written a letter to the then Chief Justice of India, Justice P. N. Bhagwati, highlighting custodial torture and deaths that occurred in custody and lock-ups. CJI Bhagwati had then taken cognisance of the letter and converted it into a writ petition in 1987.

This led to the court noting, “In almost every state there are allegations and these allegations are now increasing in frequency of deaths in custody described generally by newspapers as lock-up deaths. At present there does not appear to be any machinery to effectively deal with such allegations. Since this is an all-India question concerning all States, it is desirable to issue notices to all the State Governments to find out whether they desire to say anything in the matter.”

A slew of guidelines was issued by the Court on arrests and detention of accused persons, which holds value and relevance till today. They are:

1. The police personnel carrying out the arrest and handling the interrogation of the arrestee should bear accurate, visible and clear identification and name tags of their designation.

2. The Police officer must always carry a memo of arrest during arrest and it shall be signed by the arrested person, with his/her sign, date and time of arrest.

3. A person who has been arrested or detained and is being held in custody in a police station or interrogation centre or other lock up, shall be entitled to have at least one relative known to him or having interest in his welfare being informed, as soon as practicable, that he has been arrested and is being detained at the particular station.

4. The time, place of arrest and venue of custody of an arrestee must be notified by the police where the next friend or relative of the arrestee lives outside the district or town through the Legal Aid Organisation in the District and the police station of the area concerned telegraphically within a period of 8 to 12 hours after the arrest.

5. The person arrested must be informed why he is being arrested and made aware of his right to have someone informed of his arrest or detention as soon as he is put under arrest or is detained.

6. An arrest diary must be made at the place of detention regarding the arrest of the person which shall also disclose the name of the next friend of the person who has been informed of the arrest and the names and particulars of the police officials in whose custody the arrestee is.

7. The arrestee should, where he requests, be also examined at the time of his arrest and major and minor injuries, if any present on his/her body, must be recorded. The Inspection Memo must be signed both by the arrestee and the police officer effecting the arrest and its copy provided to the arrestee.

8. The arrestee must also be examined by a medical practitioner within every 48 hours in custody.

9. Copies of all the documents including the memo of arrest, referred to above, should be sent to the Magistrate for his record.

10. The person arrested has a right to meet a lawyer during the interrogation, although not for the whole time.

11. There should be a police control room in every District and State headquarters where information regarding the arrest and the place of custody of the person arrested must be sent by the arresting officer. This must be done within 12 hours of the arrest.

Related:

Revisiting DK Basu: The most relevant judgment of all time
Monitoring the condition of Indian prisons
Dr Mahavir Narwal, father of jailed anti-CAA activist Natasha Narwal, dies of Covid

Former Calcutta HC judge, DK Basu, passes away

He was also the petitioner in the groundbreaking DK Basu case, that laid down guidelines to prevent custodial torture

Image Courtesy:livelaw.in

Justice DK Basu, the petitioner in the landmark case DK Basu vs State of Bengal (1997), and a retired Calcutta High Court judge breathed his last on May 9.

Justice Basu practiced at the Supreme Court, till he was elevated as a judge of the Calcutta High Court in 1987. He had also served as the Chairman of Legal Aid Services West Bengal (LASWEB) and as the Chairman of the National Committee for Legal Aid Services India.

He had written a letter to the then Chief Justice of India, Justice P. N. Bhagwati, highlighting custodial torture and deaths that occurred in custody and lock-ups. CJI Bhagwati had then taken cognisance of the letter and converted it into a writ petition in 1987.

This led to the court noting, “In almost every state there are allegations and these allegations are now increasing in frequency of deaths in custody described generally by newspapers as lock-up deaths. At present there does not appear to be any machinery to effectively deal with such allegations. Since this is an all-India question concerning all States, it is desirable to issue notices to all the State Governments to find out whether they desire to say anything in the matter.”

A slew of guidelines was issued by the Court on arrests and detention of accused persons, which holds value and relevance till today. They are:

1. The police personnel carrying out the arrest and handling the interrogation of the arrestee should bear accurate, visible and clear identification and name tags of their designation.

2. The Police officer must always carry a memo of arrest during arrest and it shall be signed by the arrested person, with his/her sign, date and time of arrest.

3. A person who has been arrested or detained and is being held in custody in a police station or interrogation centre or other lock up, shall be entitled to have at least one relative known to him or having interest in his welfare being informed, as soon as practicable, that he has been arrested and is being detained at the particular station.

4. The time, place of arrest and venue of custody of an arrestee must be notified by the police where the next friend or relative of the arrestee lives outside the district or town through the Legal Aid Organisation in the District and the police station of the area concerned telegraphically within a period of 8 to 12 hours after the arrest.

5. The person arrested must be informed why he is being arrested and made aware of his right to have someone informed of his arrest or detention as soon as he is put under arrest or is detained.

6. An arrest diary must be made at the place of detention regarding the arrest of the person which shall also disclose the name of the next friend of the person who has been informed of the arrest and the names and particulars of the police officials in whose custody the arrestee is.

7. The arrestee should, where he requests, be also examined at the time of his arrest and major and minor injuries, if any present on his/her body, must be recorded. The Inspection Memo must be signed both by the arrestee and the police officer effecting the arrest and its copy provided to the arrestee.

8. The arrestee must also be examined by a medical practitioner within every 48 hours in custody.

9. Copies of all the documents including the memo of arrest, referred to above, should be sent to the Magistrate for his record.

10. The person arrested has a right to meet a lawyer during the interrogation, although not for the whole time.

11. There should be a police control room in every District and State headquarters where information regarding the arrest and the place of custody of the person arrested must be sent by the arresting officer. This must be done within 12 hours of the arrest.

Related:

Revisiting DK Basu: The most relevant judgment of all time
Monitoring the condition of Indian prisons
Dr Mahavir Narwal, father of jailed anti-CAA activist Natasha Narwal, dies of Covid

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Centre defends its vaccine price policy, says overzealous judicial intervention unnecessary

The Centre further submitted that differential pricing is to incentivise private manufacturers to increase production, and attract foreign players

10 May 2021

Image Courtesy:ndtv.com

The Central Government has told the Supreme Court that the vaccination policy conforms to the mandate of Article 14 and Article 21 of the Constitution of India, and therefore requires no interference by the judiciary.

On April 30, the Supreme Court had asked the Centre to revisit its vaccine policy so that it withstands scrutiny of Articles 14 and Article 21 of the Constitution. The three-judge bench of Justices DY Chandrachud, L Nageswara Rao and S Ravindra Bhat prima facie held that the Centre’s vaccine policy violated right to health, and suggested centralising procurement and decentralising distribution.

Based on a LiveLaw report, the Centre has now stated that its executive policy decisions have been taken in the most scientific manner, in consultation with experts in the field, keeping in mind the health and well-being of all citizens.

Currently, state governments and the Centre have two different prices for the vaccine. The court had held that compelling the state governments to negotiate with manufacturers on the ground of promoting competition and making it attractive for new vaccine manufacturers, will result in a serious detriment to those in the age group of 18 to 44 years.

But Bar & Bench reports that the Central Government has defended this policy by stating that, “Differential pricing is based on the concept of creating an incentivised demand for the private vaccine manufacturers in order to instil a competitive market resulting in higher production of vaccines and market driven affordable prices for the same. This will also attract offshore vaccine manufacturers to enter the country. This will result in increased availability of vaccine.”

The Centre has also submitted that under the current strategy, the state governments have to procure vaccines for the age group 18-44 years, and that the Central Government has, by “conducting informal consultations with the vaccine manufacturers”, ensured that the prices of vaccine is uniform across all states so as to avoid any disparity resulting from one state buying the vaccine at a higher price than the other.

According to Bar & Bench, the Centre has also added in its affidavit that the Supreme Court must let the executive perform its function independently. It reads, “In the context of a global pandemic, where the response and strategy of the nation is completely driven by expert medical and scientific opinion, there is even little room for judicial interference. Any overzealous, though well-meaning judicial intervention may lead to unforeseen and unintended consequences, in absence of any expert advice or administrative experience, leaving the doctors, scientists, experts and executive very little room to find innovative solutions on the go.”

Further, the Supreme Court has also been told that the different price factor will not have an impact on Indians as all State governments have decided to roll out vaccines free of cost for the age group of 18-44 years. “Thus, while it is ensured that the two vaccine manufacturers are not unduly enriched from out of public money, the citizens are not supposed to make any payment for getting both dosestee of the vaccine,” reads the affidavit as per LiveLaw.

This affidavit will be perused by the Supreme Court today, on May 10.

Related:

Vaccine policy detrimental to right to health; SC asks Centre to revise
SC sets up National Task Force for oxygen allocation across all States, UTs

Centre defends its vaccine price policy, says overzealous judicial intervention unnecessary

The Centre further submitted that differential pricing is to incentivise private manufacturers to increase production, and attract foreign players

Image Courtesy:ndtv.com

The Central Government has told the Supreme Court that the vaccination policy conforms to the mandate of Article 14 and Article 21 of the Constitution of India, and therefore requires no interference by the judiciary.

On April 30, the Supreme Court had asked the Centre to revisit its vaccine policy so that it withstands scrutiny of Articles 14 and Article 21 of the Constitution. The three-judge bench of Justices DY Chandrachud, L Nageswara Rao and S Ravindra Bhat prima facie held that the Centre’s vaccine policy violated right to health, and suggested centralising procurement and decentralising distribution.

Based on a LiveLaw report, the Centre has now stated that its executive policy decisions have been taken in the most scientific manner, in consultation with experts in the field, keeping in mind the health and well-being of all citizens.

Currently, state governments and the Centre have two different prices for the vaccine. The court had held that compelling the state governments to negotiate with manufacturers on the ground of promoting competition and making it attractive for new vaccine manufacturers, will result in a serious detriment to those in the age group of 18 to 44 years.

But Bar & Bench reports that the Central Government has defended this policy by stating that, “Differential pricing is based on the concept of creating an incentivised demand for the private vaccine manufacturers in order to instil a competitive market resulting in higher production of vaccines and market driven affordable prices for the same. This will also attract offshore vaccine manufacturers to enter the country. This will result in increased availability of vaccine.”

The Centre has also submitted that under the current strategy, the state governments have to procure vaccines for the age group 18-44 years, and that the Central Government has, by “conducting informal consultations with the vaccine manufacturers”, ensured that the prices of vaccine is uniform across all states so as to avoid any disparity resulting from one state buying the vaccine at a higher price than the other.

According to Bar & Bench, the Centre has also added in its affidavit that the Supreme Court must let the executive perform its function independently. It reads, “In the context of a global pandemic, where the response and strategy of the nation is completely driven by expert medical and scientific opinion, there is even little room for judicial interference. Any overzealous, though well-meaning judicial intervention may lead to unforeseen and unintended consequences, in absence of any expert advice or administrative experience, leaving the doctors, scientists, experts and executive very little room to find innovative solutions on the go.”

Further, the Supreme Court has also been told that the different price factor will not have an impact on Indians as all State governments have decided to roll out vaccines free of cost for the age group of 18-44 years. “Thus, while it is ensured that the two vaccine manufacturers are not unduly enriched from out of public money, the citizens are not supposed to make any payment for getting both dosestee of the vaccine,” reads the affidavit as per LiveLaw.

This affidavit will be perused by the Supreme Court today, on May 10.

Related:

Vaccine policy detrimental to right to health; SC asks Centre to revise
SC sets up National Task Force for oxygen allocation across all States, UTs

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Delhi HC issues notice, not convinced of hoarding allegations against AAP MLA

The High Court has also issued a notice to the Delhi Government

08 May 2021

Image Courtesy:barandbench.com

The Delhi High Court has issued a notice to Aam Aadmi Party and its legislator Imran Hussain in a plea alleging hoarding of oxygen cylinders at his office. Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli have directed him to be present before the court on the next hearing date. However the court stressed that neither from the posts announcing free distribution of oxygen not from the photographs was there any evidence of hoarding.

The post on social media has pictures of people lining up outside Hussain’s office and the caption reads, “To make oxygen reach those needing it, in Delhi, Cabinet Minister Imran Hussain Free Oxygen Distribution from his office”, reported LiveLaw.

The court perused the online post, as urged by the petitioner and responded, “The pictures don’t show hoarding. People are standing in line…some are taking (oxygen) from there.” The court also noted that if Hussain was “not eating away from the allocated quantity of oxygen to Delhi”, there was no reason to raise an alarm.

The Bench was quoted saying, “First we have to see where is he getting it from…he may be getting from Faridabad (on his own)…you can’t really have a problem. Even Gurudwaras are doing it.”

According to the media, the plea was filed by one Vedansh Sharma who alleged that the Delhi Cabinet Minister was “hoarding oxygen cylinders at a time when entire Delhi is in the crisis of the supply of the oxygen”. Sharma alleged that what Hussain did was illegal.

Vedansh Sharma’s counsel also referred to some online post from the official handle of the AAP, which stated that free oxygen was available at Hussain’s office. Urging the Court to see it, his counsel argued that hoarding of cylinders was visible in the picture, and thus action should be initiated against Hussain.

Senior Advocate Rahul Mehra (appearing for Delhi government), reportedly told the Court that if there was any veracity in the allegations, the strictest possible action shall be taken irrespective of who it is.

The matter will be heard on May 10.

Related:

J & K: Prior approval for oxygen supply, gag order on doctors speaking to media
Gauhati HC seeks data on number of children in prisons in Assam
SC directs early hearing for plea against Central Vista, matter back in Delhi HC

Delhi HC issues notice, not convinced of hoarding allegations against AAP MLA

The High Court has also issued a notice to the Delhi Government

Image Courtesy:barandbench.com

The Delhi High Court has issued a notice to Aam Aadmi Party and its legislator Imran Hussain in a plea alleging hoarding of oxygen cylinders at his office. Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli have directed him to be present before the court on the next hearing date. However the court stressed that neither from the posts announcing free distribution of oxygen not from the photographs was there any evidence of hoarding.

The post on social media has pictures of people lining up outside Hussain’s office and the caption reads, “To make oxygen reach those needing it, in Delhi, Cabinet Minister Imran Hussain Free Oxygen Distribution from his office”, reported LiveLaw.

The court perused the online post, as urged by the petitioner and responded, “The pictures don’t show hoarding. People are standing in line…some are taking (oxygen) from there.” The court also noted that if Hussain was “not eating away from the allocated quantity of oxygen to Delhi”, there was no reason to raise an alarm.

The Bench was quoted saying, “First we have to see where is he getting it from…he may be getting from Faridabad (on his own)…you can’t really have a problem. Even Gurudwaras are doing it.”

According to the media, the plea was filed by one Vedansh Sharma who alleged that the Delhi Cabinet Minister was “hoarding oxygen cylinders at a time when entire Delhi is in the crisis of the supply of the oxygen”. Sharma alleged that what Hussain did was illegal.

Vedansh Sharma’s counsel also referred to some online post from the official handle of the AAP, which stated that free oxygen was available at Hussain’s office. Urging the Court to see it, his counsel argued that hoarding of cylinders was visible in the picture, and thus action should be initiated against Hussain.

Senior Advocate Rahul Mehra (appearing for Delhi government), reportedly told the Court that if there was any veracity in the allegations, the strictest possible action shall be taken irrespective of who it is.

The matter will be heard on May 10.

Related:

J & K: Prior approval for oxygen supply, gag order on doctors speaking to media
Gauhati HC seeks data on number of children in prisons in Assam
SC directs early hearing for plea against Central Vista, matter back in Delhi HC

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SC sets up National Task Force for oxygen allocation across all States, UTs

The court has also made it very clear, that the Centre is bound to supply 700 metric tons of oxygen to Delhi on a daily basis

08 May 2021

Image Courtesy:tribuneindia.com

The Supreme Court has set up a 12-member National Task Force for formulating a methodology for scientific allocation of oxygen to all the States and Union Territories in order to deal with the scarcity of oxygen. The tenure has been fixed for six months.

As per the Bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and MR Shah, the Task force would consist of:

1. Dr. Bhabatosh Biswas, Former Vice Chancellor, West Bengal University of Health Sciences, Kolkata

2. Dr. Devender Singh Rana, Chairperson, Board of Management, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Delhi

3. Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty, Chairperson and Executive Director, Narayana Healthcare, Bengaluru

4. Dr. Gagandeep Kang, Professor, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu

5. Dr. JV Peter, Director, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu

6. Dr. Naresh Trehan, Chairperson and Managing Director, Medanta Hospital and Heart Institute, Gurugram

7. Dr. Rahul Pandit, Director, Critical Care Medicine and ICU, Fortis Hospital, Mulund (Mumbai, Maharashtra) and Kalyan (Maharashtra)

8. Dr. Saumitra Rawat, Chairman & Head, Department of Surgical Gastroenterology and Liver Transplant, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Delhi

9. Dr. Shiv Kumar Sarin, Senior Professor and Head of Department of Hepatology, Director, Institute of Liver and Biliary Science (ILBS), Delhi

10. Dr. Zarir F Udwadia, Consultant Chest Physician, Hinduja Hospital, Breach Candy Hospital and Parsee General Hospital, Mumbai

11. Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India (ex officio member); and

12. The Convenor of the National Task Force, who shall also be a member, will be the Cabinet Secretary to the Union Government

The Supreme Court has said that the purpose behind this Task Force would be to facilitate “a public health response to the pandemic based on scientific and specialised domain knowledge.” In addition to this, the court has also said that, “We expect that the leading experts in the country shall associate with the work of the Task Force both as members and resource persons. This will facilitate a meeting of minds and the formulation of scientific strategies to deal with an unprecedented human crisis.”

In the meantime, the Union Government has been directed to allocate oxygen to different States as per their respective needs until the Task Force gets started on their recommendations. The order reads, “The Union Government shall continue with the present practice of making allocations of oxygen (as modified by the orders of this Court or the orders of the High Courts as the case may be) until the Task Force has submitted its recommendations in regard to proposed modalities. The Union Government shall on receipt of the recommendations of the Task Force take an appropriate decision in regard to the allocation of oxygen and on all other recommendations.”

Directions regarding supply of oxygen to Delhi

The Supreme Court noted the submission of Senior Counsel Rahul Mehra, appearing for Delhi, that he welcomed the supply of 730.7 metric tons of oxygen from the Central government on May 5 but the next day, the National Capital received a total quantity of 189.532 metric tons as of 9 A.M. A quantity of 16.32 metric tons was in transit to the knowledge of GNCTD, resulting in a total availability of only 206 metric tons (approximately).  

The Supreme Court sternly observed that the Centre Government has been, time and again, directed to fulfil the demand of 700 metric tons of oxygen supply to Delhi. “The directions contained in the order of this Court dated 30 April 2021 leave no manner of doubt that the Union Government is under an obligation to ensure a daily supply of 700 MT to meet the existing requirements of the NCTD”, remarked the court.

The Supreme Court, on May 5, had reiterated the direction for maintaining the supplies to Delhi at 700 metric tons per day and had directed the Centre to place on record a plan to achieve the fulfilment of this direction.

The court has now held, “The plan which has been placed before this Court is subject to caveats and conditions which cannot be accepted. What is sought to be assured in the first part of the plan is diluted with the next segment. 700 MT was not intended to be a requirement to be fulfilled for one day or sporadically, but on a daily basis. Daily basis means for every day.”

The court also recorded that as of 9 A.M on May 7, the total quantity which has been received at the Delhi border is 87.97 metric tons, while 9.64 metric tons was under transit. “We direct the Union of India to remedy the situation forthwith and to ensure that the direction issued by this Court for the availability of 700 MT is strictly observed on a daily basis, pending further orders”, ordered the court.

The matter will now be heard on May 17.

The order may be read here:

Related:

Covid-19 has completely exposed Delhi’s medical infrastructure: High Court
We want 700 MT of oxygen supplied to Delhi every day and we mean business: SC to Centre

 

SC sets up National Task Force for oxygen allocation across all States, UTs

The court has also made it very clear, that the Centre is bound to supply 700 metric tons of oxygen to Delhi on a daily basis

Image Courtesy:tribuneindia.com

The Supreme Court has set up a 12-member National Task Force for formulating a methodology for scientific allocation of oxygen to all the States and Union Territories in order to deal with the scarcity of oxygen. The tenure has been fixed for six months.

As per the Bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and MR Shah, the Task force would consist of:

1. Dr. Bhabatosh Biswas, Former Vice Chancellor, West Bengal University of Health Sciences, Kolkata

2. Dr. Devender Singh Rana, Chairperson, Board of Management, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Delhi

3. Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty, Chairperson and Executive Director, Narayana Healthcare, Bengaluru

4. Dr. Gagandeep Kang, Professor, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu

5. Dr. JV Peter, Director, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu

6. Dr. Naresh Trehan, Chairperson and Managing Director, Medanta Hospital and Heart Institute, Gurugram

7. Dr. Rahul Pandit, Director, Critical Care Medicine and ICU, Fortis Hospital, Mulund (Mumbai, Maharashtra) and Kalyan (Maharashtra)

8. Dr. Saumitra Rawat, Chairman & Head, Department of Surgical Gastroenterology and Liver Transplant, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Delhi

9. Dr. Shiv Kumar Sarin, Senior Professor and Head of Department of Hepatology, Director, Institute of Liver and Biliary Science (ILBS), Delhi

10. Dr. Zarir F Udwadia, Consultant Chest Physician, Hinduja Hospital, Breach Candy Hospital and Parsee General Hospital, Mumbai

11. Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India (ex officio member); and

12. The Convenor of the National Task Force, who shall also be a member, will be the Cabinet Secretary to the Union Government

The Supreme Court has said that the purpose behind this Task Force would be to facilitate “a public health response to the pandemic based on scientific and specialised domain knowledge.” In addition to this, the court has also said that, “We expect that the leading experts in the country shall associate with the work of the Task Force both as members and resource persons. This will facilitate a meeting of minds and the formulation of scientific strategies to deal with an unprecedented human crisis.”

In the meantime, the Union Government has been directed to allocate oxygen to different States as per their respective needs until the Task Force gets started on their recommendations. The order reads, “The Union Government shall continue with the present practice of making allocations of oxygen (as modified by the orders of this Court or the orders of the High Courts as the case may be) until the Task Force has submitted its recommendations in regard to proposed modalities. The Union Government shall on receipt of the recommendations of the Task Force take an appropriate decision in regard to the allocation of oxygen and on all other recommendations.”

Directions regarding supply of oxygen to Delhi

The Supreme Court noted the submission of Senior Counsel Rahul Mehra, appearing for Delhi, that he welcomed the supply of 730.7 metric tons of oxygen from the Central government on May 5 but the next day, the National Capital received a total quantity of 189.532 metric tons as of 9 A.M. A quantity of 16.32 metric tons was in transit to the knowledge of GNCTD, resulting in a total availability of only 206 metric tons (approximately).  

The Supreme Court sternly observed that the Centre Government has been, time and again, directed to fulfil the demand of 700 metric tons of oxygen supply to Delhi. “The directions contained in the order of this Court dated 30 April 2021 leave no manner of doubt that the Union Government is under an obligation to ensure a daily supply of 700 MT to meet the existing requirements of the NCTD”, remarked the court.

The Supreme Court, on May 5, had reiterated the direction for maintaining the supplies to Delhi at 700 metric tons per day and had directed the Centre to place on record a plan to achieve the fulfilment of this direction.

The court has now held, “The plan which has been placed before this Court is subject to caveats and conditions which cannot be accepted. What is sought to be assured in the first part of the plan is diluted with the next segment. 700 MT was not intended to be a requirement to be fulfilled for one day or sporadically, but on a daily basis. Daily basis means for every day.”

The court also recorded that as of 9 A.M on May 7, the total quantity which has been received at the Delhi border is 87.97 metric tons, while 9.64 metric tons was under transit. “We direct the Union of India to remedy the situation forthwith and to ensure that the direction issued by this Court for the availability of 700 MT is strictly observed on a daily basis, pending further orders”, ordered the court.

The matter will now be heard on May 17.

The order may be read here:

Related:

Covid-19 has completely exposed Delhi’s medical infrastructure: High Court
We want 700 MT of oxygen supplied to Delhi every day and we mean business: SC to Centre

 

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UP: Ex-military man alleges physical and sexual assault by Puranpur police!

The man, along with mother and two sisters, was travelling to Likhimpuri for his belated brother-in-law’s last rites, when he was stopped by local police.

08 May 2021

Image Courtesy:amarujala.com

An ex-military man alleged physical and sexual assault at the hands of Puranpur police in Pilibhit district of Uttar Pradesh on May 3, 2021, while en route to his deceased brother-in-law’s house.

Advocate Vasu Kukreja speaking on behalf of the survivor said the man was travelling to Likhimpurkhiri (Lakhimpur kheeri) district to visit his sister for the last rites of her husband when he was stopped by local police. The path was barricaded. According to Circle Office DSP Lallan Singh speaking to Sabrang India, this was done because a nearby area was carrying out counting for Panchayat elections.

The man accompanied by his 82-year-old mother and two sisters, was asked to present papers for his visit, as per a formal complaint lodged by the aggrieved to the UN Human Rights Council and State DGP and Chief General Secretary.

However, the family was taken away by the police to the station, following which the alleged incident occurred. The survivor posted videos presenting injuries to his body on social media. Some of this photo and video evidence is gruesome and gory and hence Sabrang India has withheld publishing this.

Responding to the news, the Kisan Ekta Morcha at Ghazipur that observed the survivor at its dharnas condemned the act and demanded immediate intervention by police officials.

“If Resham Singh will not get justice, we will call for chakka jam (protest),” warned members.

A formal complaint sent by the organisation can be seen below:

Meanwhile the state police suspended Sub-inspector Daroga Ramnaresh after the video became viral. However, DSP Singh said that witnesses have not confirmed beating at the police station as per Singh’s account.

“People were being redirected that day as a crowd had gathered at the counting area. However, this person refused to take the other route. Eventually, heated arguments broke out. We are still looking into the situation to see how the person got his injuries,” he told Sabrang India.

Police claimed that the complainant was rude to the officers working at the barricade and threatened to break it down.

Situation at Uttar Pradesh

The state recorded as many as 31,165 new Covid-19 cases on May 6, as per the health department. An Indian Express report also claimed a record high of 357 deaths in the same time. However, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath maintains that there is no health crisis in the region. Similarly, media coverage of state crematoria was banned by the government.

Earlier, the government warned that people who seek beds for ailing relatives on social media will be booked under the National Security act (NSA). Adityanath instructed the police to levy charges on any person spreading “rumours”.

The survivor claimed he was also threatened with charges under Section 144 and sections of the Epidemics Disease Act.

Related:

Uttar Pradesh O2 crisis: FIR against Lucknow hospital for putting up shortage notice
Uttar Pradesh: CM Adityanath gives special attention to cows, as citizens battle Covid-19
Ground Report: Purvanchal in East UP struggling amidst Covid-19 second wave
UP: Covid crisis claims at least 706 primary teachers and kin owing to election duty!

 

UP: Ex-military man alleges physical and sexual assault by Puranpur police!

The man, along with mother and two sisters, was travelling to Likhimpuri for his belated brother-in-law’s last rites, when he was stopped by local police.

Image Courtesy:amarujala.com

An ex-military man alleged physical and sexual assault at the hands of Puranpur police in Pilibhit district of Uttar Pradesh on May 3, 2021, while en route to his deceased brother-in-law’s house.

Advocate Vasu Kukreja speaking on behalf of the survivor said the man was travelling to Likhimpurkhiri (Lakhimpur kheeri) district to visit his sister for the last rites of her husband when he was stopped by local police. The path was barricaded. According to Circle Office DSP Lallan Singh speaking to Sabrang India, this was done because a nearby area was carrying out counting for Panchayat elections.

The man accompanied by his 82-year-old mother and two sisters, was asked to present papers for his visit, as per a formal complaint lodged by the aggrieved to the UN Human Rights Council and State DGP and Chief General Secretary.

However, the family was taken away by the police to the station, following which the alleged incident occurred. The survivor posted videos presenting injuries to his body on social media. Some of this photo and video evidence is gruesome and gory and hence Sabrang India has withheld publishing this.

Responding to the news, the Kisan Ekta Morcha at Ghazipur that observed the survivor at its dharnas condemned the act and demanded immediate intervention by police officials.

“If Resham Singh will not get justice, we will call for chakka jam (protest),” warned members.

A formal complaint sent by the organisation can be seen below:

Meanwhile the state police suspended Sub-inspector Daroga Ramnaresh after the video became viral. However, DSP Singh said that witnesses have not confirmed beating at the police station as per Singh’s account.

“People were being redirected that day as a crowd had gathered at the counting area. However, this person refused to take the other route. Eventually, heated arguments broke out. We are still looking into the situation to see how the person got his injuries,” he told Sabrang India.

Police claimed that the complainant was rude to the officers working at the barricade and threatened to break it down.

Situation at Uttar Pradesh

The state recorded as many as 31,165 new Covid-19 cases on May 6, as per the health department. An Indian Express report also claimed a record high of 357 deaths in the same time. However, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath maintains that there is no health crisis in the region. Similarly, media coverage of state crematoria was banned by the government.

Earlier, the government warned that people who seek beds for ailing relatives on social media will be booked under the National Security act (NSA). Adityanath instructed the police to levy charges on any person spreading “rumours”.

The survivor claimed he was also threatened with charges under Section 144 and sections of the Epidemics Disease Act.

Related:

Uttar Pradesh O2 crisis: FIR against Lucknow hospital for putting up shortage notice
Uttar Pradesh: CM Adityanath gives special attention to cows, as citizens battle Covid-19
Ground Report: Purvanchal in East UP struggling amidst Covid-19 second wave
UP: Covid crisis claims at least 706 primary teachers and kin owing to election duty!

 

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