Allahabad HC Bar Association chief urges closure of court for 2 weeks in the wake of rising Covid-19 cases in Uttar Pradesh

Amrendra Nath Singh, the President of the Allahabad High Court Bar Association has urged the High Court to close for at least a period of two weeks and highlighted the need for a complete lockdown in wake of the rising Covide-19 cases in Uttar Pradesh.

The division bench of Justices Siddharth Verma and Ajit Kumar passed this order while hearing a PIL pertaining to inhuman conditions at quarantine centres and for providing better treatment of Covid positive patients.

The recent spike of Covid-19 infection has hit every corner of state. The surge has absolutely paralysed public life and all the medical aid systems have reached to a stage of complete saturation. We have been informed that Covid hospitals are over -flooded with Covid patients and there is both manpower shortage and available facilities in hospitals.

The situation is so alarming that if it is not handled carefully and cautiously we may lead to stage of complete collapse of public health system.

Advocate Raghav Dwivedi said that the Covid hospitals are not admitting patients and thus Covid infected people who could be saved from the pandemic have been left to the mercy of nature.

Amrendra Nath Singh, the President of Bar Association has urged that the High Court should be closed for at-least two weeks so that litigants and lawyers may not rush to the Court and the spread of infection is contained. Looking to the current situation, he has submitted that courts below may be directed to not to pursue non bailable warrants that may have been issued in various cases until April 30, 2021

He has further submitted that while window for filing of cases in the High Court may remain open but there should be no physical hearing of cases and even online hearing of cases should be done where issues regarding demolition, eviction and recovery are involved.

Advocate Rohit Pandey has informed the Court that in the mass Covid testing that had taken three days ago in his residential colony/ area no nasopharyngeal swab was taken and swab was taken from under the tongue which means an ultimate real time reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction (RTPCR) to be negative. This itself amounts to fraud and playing with public lives. Showing lesser number of Covid patients in this way, in our considered opinion, neither can help the medical department nor, those sitting in administration to deal with pandemic.

“Night curfew, will not be enough to combat the virus and the government should examine the viability of complete lock-down in those districts were spread has increased alarmingly, for at least two weeks or three weeks. Night curfew or Corona curfew is a very small step. What we need to ensure is that there is no unnecessary public movement even during day timings,” the Court said.

The Court stated that the All public gatherings must be restricted to fifty persons. The District administrations are directly to religiously comply with the guidelines issued by Stae Government on April 11, 2021.

The Court directed the government to look into the viability of complete lock -down in those districts were spread has increased alarmingly, for at least two weeks or three weeks and at least immediately all public gatherings must be restricted to 50 persons

The court has also directed for immediate purchase and supply of bipap machine and high flow cannula mask in ambulance to all the district hospitals and level 2 and level 3 hospitals of the districts like Prayagraj, Lucknow, Varanasi,Kanpur, Gorakhpur, were Covid infection has got widely spread

The court stated that the basic health needs includes the triple TTT programme i.e. Testing, Tracking and Treatment. For this we have to ensure that people are tested before hand. At every Centre the District administration must ensure large-scale testing and all clinical samples that are collected must be sent to the laboratory at every six hourly interval so that RT-PCR comes within 18 to 24 hours to start with medication

The court said that the public awareness programme regarding spread of Covid-19 must go on. District and Police administration must follow our last order dated April 06, 2021 in its letter and spirit.

We make it clear that if we are apprised on the next date fixed of any one moving on roads without mask, we shall take it as an act of contempt on the part of police and will certainly haul up the SSP, Prayagraj and other concerned Districts for the same

The Court directed both the Central as well as State Government to ensure production of remdesivir, an injectable anti viral medicine by pharmaceuticals making them available easily the necessary ingredients and its supply in open market.

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The State shall file affidavit of an officer not below the rank of Secretary in this Court by the next date fixed detailing out the measures taken in the light of the observations made hereinabove, the Court ordered

The Court has fixed the next hearing of the Petition on April 19, 2021
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