The MP high court on Tuesday directed authorities of the state government to treat the instructions given by the monitoring committee as those issued by the court with regard to any demand for providing medical or other facilities to the Bhopal gas victims.
The court said in case it was not possible for the state authority concerned to comply with the directions issued by the committee then a formal application should be moved before the court for directions.
The court heard the petition filed by the Bhopal Gas Peedith Mahila Udyog Sangthan, the Bhopal Group for Information and Action and the Bhopal Gas Peedith Sangharsh Sahyog Samiti on Tuesday.
The petitioners' counsel senior advocate Naman Nagrath said the state government was not complying with the report of the monitoring committee highlighting deficiencies in the hospitals and clinics where the Bhopal gas victims are being given treatment.
In August 2013, the apex court had set up the monitoring committee to take steps to operationalise medical surveillance, computerisation of medical information, publication of health booklets, providing smart cards, etc. for the Bhopal gas affected persons.
The apex court had empowered the monitoring committee to oversee proper functioning of the hospitals including Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre (BMHRC) as well as other government hospitals dealing with the gas victims.
The monitoring committee is authorised to hear complaints and if necessary can even call for records from the concerned hospital or department, record the statements of government staff and employees of the hospital and make its recommendations to the state government for taking appropriate steps on concerned issues.
Also the monitoring committee is authorised to keep watch on proper functioning of hospitals including BMHRC and other government hospitals treating gas victims.
If the monitoring committee issues any instructions/suggestions/directions then the state authorities are required to comply with the same, the court said.
The court's directives came after the petitioner counsel pointed the state authorities were not removing deficiencies pointed out by the monitoring committee in its report of September 2014 including lack of medicines, shortfall of specialist doctors, equipment in the hospitals providing medical aid to gas victims from time to time.