HC seeks reports from Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh on Covid surge
Taking note of “alarming situation” due to Covid-19 outbreak in parts of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh, the high court on Tuesday sought reports from both the states and the UT.
The high court was seized of a matter pertaining to Haryana, in which amicus curaie, senior advocate Rupinder Khosla had told the court that there was complete chaos due to the situation arising out of the spread of Covid-19. “Government guidelines are not being followed in the region. Beds are not available to those who are seeking admission in hospitals. Supply of oxygen is severely depleted. Situation demands immediate attention of this court,” he had told court further adding that situation to say the least is “alarming”.
He had emphasized on the casual attitude of the public even at a stage when spread of Covid-19 is reaching its peak. Public places are crowded and government guidelines are not being followed. The situation is equally grim in all three states, he had told court, urging the bench to implead Chandigarh administration and Punjab too in this case as parties and seek reports on measures being taken.
Earlier, Haryana government had told the court that appropriate steps are being taken and submitted an affidavit of secretary, home department, Haryana, Pankaj Yadav, who had told the court that a state-level monitoring committee headed by state health minister has been constituted to look into various issues, particularly timely supply of oxygen to the hospitals. Daily requirement of oxygen as on date is 70/80 metric tonnes while the production in the state is 270 metric tonnes.
Khosla, however, had responded to the affidavit from the state stating that all issues raised by the court have not been responded to.
The court taking note of the submissions of amicus curaie ordered impleadment of Chandigarh and Punjab as respondents and posted the matter for further hearing on April 22. The issue raised about Covid-19 situation in Haryana on the previous date of April 9 were about areas with more infections have been identified, whether some restrictions need to be imposed in such areas, whether the age limit for vaccination needs to be lowered to contain the crisis situation.