Contempt plea in Delhi High Court against Delhi Chief Secretary, others for inaction in regulating online pathological labs
A contempt application has been moved in the Delhi High Court seeking initiation of proceedings against Delhi Chief Secretary, Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare(MoHFW), Directors General of Health Service and The Indian Council of Medical Research(ICMR) for allegedly not complying with a court order to take action against illegal online health service aggregators operating in Delhi and to regulate online pathological labs.
The contempt petition, moved by one Rohit Jain through counsel Shashank Deo Sudhi, said the respondent has completely failed to comply with the said order of this court by not taking appropriate legal actions against online health aggregators despite the direction.
“The court had on August 6 directed the concerned respondent authorities to initiate action in accordance with law against any illegal online health service aggregators operating in Delhi in violation of the applicable law including the Clinical Establishment (Registration and Regulations) Act, 2010, if applicable, or in violation of any rules, regulations or government policies applicable to the facts of the case. Action will be initiated in accordance with law against such violators of the law as expeditiously as possible and practicable, after giving an adequate opportunity of being heard to the concerned parties,” the plea said.
The plea, which was moved on Tuesday and is likely to come for hearing on Thursday, alleged that the respondents are equally responsible for restraining the illegal practices of online aggregators, which are freely being carried out under the eyes of these officials in utter violations of the rules and regulations laid down by statutes and the guidelines issued by the respondents from time to time ever since the outbreak of deadly Covid-19.
It also said several illegal online aggregators are advertising freely by offering attractive packages for body check-ups including the test for Covid-19 through texts or various online modes and added that the petitioner himself has received advertisements of online aggregators through e-mail for getting tested.
“It’s also submitted that it is an extremely serious issue that the online aggregators are operating without any authorization and approval. Besides, these online aggregators are not accredited by any accreditation agency. The existence of such illegal online diagnostic aggregators are posing serious health challenge as a large number of people are falling prey to the attractive health packages being offered by these illegal online aggregators,” the plea stated.
“The acts of respondents clearly constitute the contempt of the court and appropriate contempt proceedings should be initiated against them for acting against the order dated August 6, 2020 of this court,” it added.
The plea further alleged that the respondents’ officials have been playing with the precious lives of the innocent people by promoting unqualified, unregistered medical practitioners to sign the pathological report and exposing the common people to the mercy of untrained and highly incompetent medical/pathological professional.
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