Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test is considered to be the most reliable for Covid-19 testing.(HT Photo)
Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test is considered to be the most reliable for Covid-19 testing.(HT Photo)

SC notice to Centre to fix uniform rate for RT-PCR test after petitioner alleges loot

The petition alleged that while RT PCR test kits are available for as low as Rs 200, hospitals and private labs were charging a very high price.
By Abraham Thomas | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON NOV 24, 2020 08:18 PM IST

The Supreme Court on Tuesday sought a response from the Centre on a petition seeking fixation of uniform ceiling on the RT-PCR test for detection of Coronovirus disease (COVID-19) across the country.

The petition filed by a lawyer Ajay Agrawal demanded that the rate throughout the country for this test should be fixed at a maximum of Rs 400 as he produced ‘evidence’ of a Nagpur-based supplier who is willing to provide RT-PCR test kits for as cheap as Rs 200.

A three-judge bench headed by the Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde agreed to issue notice to the Centre and fixed the matter for hearing after two weeks. On the next day of hearing, the court will examine this issue along with a pending petition that has demanded subsidized treatment for Covid-19 patients at private hospitals.

Agrawal raised this issue in public interest as he pointed out to the court that presently states were charging citizens at will. Delhi, for instance, fixed the rate for RT-PCR testing kits at Rs 2,400 while Andhra Pradesh has pegged it as high as Rs 2,900. Haryana had the lowest rate of Rs 900 per test kit, while West Bengal and Karnataka have last month revised these rates at Rs 1,500-1,600. Meanwhile, in neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, with effect from October 31, government hospitals/laboratories are charging Rs 600 per test while private hospitals in the state continue to charge Rs 1600 per test.

“The RT-PCR kits are presently available for less than Rs 200. The deponent has received a latest quotation (for RT-PCR kits) dated November 21 from Orange City Glassco Private Limited, based in Nagpur for Rs 199 plus discount up to Rs 25 on bulk purchase….there is no additional cost as the machines used for RT-PCR test are already there with the laboratories as they use it to conduct large number of tests for (testing) other infectious diseases such as HIV, Hepatitis, dengue, tuberculosis, malaria, etc,” Agrawal stated in his petition.

Also Read: Centre asks CMs to form vaccination panel, identify the vulnerable. Most say they are ready

He urged the Court to urgently consider the matter as in the wake of the rising number of Covid-19 cases, the citizens have to conduct this test at the earliest.

The petition said, “Crores of people have lost their jobs and maximum people are unemployed….It is the work of a welfare state to see the welfare of the people and stop this type of loot.” Even at Rs 400, the petitioner claimed that private establishments can still make profit as most of the private labs/hospitals have already installed the test machines.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
In this file photo, Indian army trucks drive near Pangong Tso lake near the India China border in Ladakh area. (AP)
In this file photo, Indian army trucks drive near Pangong Tso lake near the India China border in Ladakh area. (AP)

India, China hold another round of military talks to defuse LAC tensions

By HT Correspondent, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 25, 2021 12:07 AM IST
  • The situation in the Ladakh sector remains tense and the ongoing military and diplomatic dialogue has not yielded results.
Close
A woman walks past a painting of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi a day before the inauguration of the Covid-19 vaccination drive on a street in Mumbai, India, January 15, 2021. (REUTERS)
A woman walks past a painting of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi a day before the inauguration of the Covid-19 vaccination drive on a street in Mumbai, India, January 15, 2021. (REUTERS)

Covid-19 vaccination: Over 16 lakh inoculated in 9 days, Karnataka leads the way

Written by Arpan Rai, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 11:07 PM IST
The government data also said that only 10 Adverse Events Following Immunization (AEFIs) have been reported till 7.30 pm on Sunday.
Close
Villagers said the district administration broke the lock of the main gate of Government Primary School and shifted the cows. (Representational image/HT Photo)
Villagers said the district administration broke the lock of the main gate of Government Primary School and shifted the cows. (Representational image/HT Photo)

In Tikamgarh district of MP, primary school converted into cow shelter

PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 11:01 PM IST
  • A school teacher said more than 200 cows destroyed the kitchen garden and at least 100 plants of flowers, fruits and medicinal plant in the school premises.
Close
Rahat Abrar said that the historic ceremony would be carried out by Vice Chancellor Professor Tariq Mansoor.(HT File Photo)
Rahat Abrar said that the historic ceremony would be carried out by Vice Chancellor Professor Tariq Mansoor.(HT File Photo)

Time capsule to be buried on Republic Day to mark 100 years of AMU

PTI, Aligarh
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 10:59 PM IST
AMU spokesman Rahat Abrar said that "The steel capsule which weighs 1.5 tonne would be buried at a depth of 30 feet in front of Victoria Gate, the iconic structure, which marks the heart of this historic institution."
Close
The rally will be held from Delhi's three border points -- Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur -- and adequate security will be provided to it, police said.(REUTERS)
The rally will be held from Delhi's three border points -- Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur -- and adequate security will be provided to it, police said.(REUTERS)

Delhi Police Commissioner issues circular for tractor rally

PTI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 10:57 PM IST
  • The circular said that all officers and personnel as well as CAPF and any other force deployed for the Republic Day Parade security arrangements should be made aware and be prepared that they will be required for law and order arrangements immediately after the official celebration is over.
Close
The police said no traffic will be allowed on Vijay Chowk from 6.00 pm on January 25 till the parade is over, wheras Rajpath is already out of bounds.(ANI)
The police said no traffic will be allowed on Vijay Chowk from 6.00 pm on January 25 till the parade is over, wheras Rajpath is already out of bounds.(ANI)

Delhi Traffic Police issues advisory for road movement ahead of Republic Day

ANI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 10:49 PM IST
  • Delhi traffic police requested road users to accordingly plan their journies and avoid the route of parade and tableaux, from 4 am to 12:30 pm for their own convenience.
Close
“I am thinking of Netaji, I am thinking of my countrymen” said the Prime Minister.
“I am thinking of Netaji, I am thinking of my countrymen” said the Prime Minister.

‘Thank you West Bengal’ tweets PM Modi as he shares video of his Kolkata visit

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Ayshee Bhaduri, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 24, 2021 10:52 PM IST
The video includes pictures and videos of the Prime Minister’s at Victoria Memorial to mark the occasion of ParakramDivas, Shubhash Chandra Bose’s residence amongst others, with sound bites from his speech at the former added for effect.
Close
Union minister Smriti Irani, S Jaishankar shared photos with their daughters on the occasion of national Girl Child Day.
Union minister Smriti Irani, S Jaishankar shared photos with their daughters on the occasion of national Girl Child Day.

Gird Child Day: Leaders, eminent personalities laud contribution of daughters

PTI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 10:32 PM IST
India celebrates National Girl Child Day, an initiative of the ministry of women and child development, every year on January 24.
Close
The tiger skin that was seizied by the Chhattisgarh police on Sunday in Dhamtari district.(Sourced)
The tiger skin that was seizied by the Chhattisgarh police on Sunday in Dhamtari district.(Sourced)

Chhattisgarh police arrest man trying to sell tiger skin

PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 10:07 PM IST
  • According to the FIR registered by the police, the estimated value of the tiger skin that was seized is 40 lakh in the international market.
Close
File photo of Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar.(HT Photo)
File photo of Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar.(HT Photo)

Nitish Kumar wishes speedy recovery to Lalu, but won't call. Here's why

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Amit Chaturvedi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 10:04 PM IST
Lalu Prasad Yadav was airlifted to Delhi from Ranchi where he is being treated for multiple ailments.
Close
According to officials, this is one of the biggest GST frauds detected in recent times(Representational photo)
According to officials, this is one of the biggest GST frauds detected in recent times(Representational photo)

Eight CAs among 258 arrested since mid-November in GST fraud

By Rajeev Jayaswal
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 09:52 PM IST
  • One CA was arrested on Saturday along with four businessmen in Jaipur for operating 25 fake firms to fraudulently avail and pass on input tax credit.
Close
While addressing a press conference here, Congress General Secretary Ajay Maken alleged that excise duty on diesel has been hiked by 820 per cent and 258 per cent on petrol in the last six years.(ANI)
While addressing a press conference here, Congress General Secretary Ajay Maken alleged that excise duty on diesel has been hiked by 820 per cent and 258 per cent on petrol in the last six years.(ANI)

Congress slams Center over petrol, diesel price hike

ANI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 09:50 PM IST
  • While addressing a press conference, Congress General Secretary Ajay Maken demanded an explanation of how exactly has the government spent 20 lakh crore that it "collected by multiple hikes in excise duty on both petrol and diesel" in last six years.
Close
A child wearing a blanket walks through an alley of a residential area on a cold winter day in New Delhi on January 24, 2021. (Photo by Sajjad HUSSAIN / AFP)(AFP)
A child wearing a blanket walks through an alley of a residential area on a cold winter day in New Delhi on January 24, 2021. (Photo by Sajjad HUSSAIN / AFP)(AFP)

Fresh grip of chill in north, central India over next 3-4 days: IMD

By hindustantimes.com
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 09:27 PM IST
This fresh spell of chill has been caused by the movement of the western disturbance further northeastwards on Sunday from Jammu and Kashmir.
Close
The gold was kept in safes and vaults of the Surana Corporation under the CBI’s lock and seal. (HT Photo)
The gold was kept in safes and vaults of the Surana Corporation under the CBI’s lock and seal. (HT Photo)

Gold worth Rs4.50 crore seized at Chennai airport, 9 held

PTI, Chennai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 09:19 PM IST
Acting on inputs that 17 passengers, including four women passengers, who had arrived from Dubai on Friday, were involved in gold-smuggling, the Customs sleuths intercepted them on suspicion and recovered the precious metal.
Close
Roji Behera (second from right) says she wants to work till she saves enough to pay off her college dues.(HT PHOTO)
Roji Behera (second from right) says she wants to work till she saves enough to pay off her college dues.(HT PHOTO)

Odisha Dalit girl works as labourer to clear pending dues of engineering college

By Debabrata Mohanty
PUBLISHED ON JAN 24, 2021 09:17 PM IST
  • The girl claims that the college has withheld her diploma certificate for non-payment of dues.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP