Consider imposing lockdown to curb the second wave of Covid-19: SC to Centre and States

Amid the sharp rise in covid-19 cases, the Supreme Court urged the Centre and states “to consider imposing a lockdown to break the chain of COVID-19 in the interest of public welfare.” It released directions to the Central and state governments on the COVID-19 situation.

SC also directed the central government to revisit its initiatives and protocols, including the oxygen availability, and vaccine prices, and availability of essential drugs at affordable prices.

The top Court, released an order late Sunday night, and directed the Central government, in collaboration with State governments, should create a buffer stock of oxygen to ensure supply lines continue to function even in unforeseen circumstances and decentralize emergency stocks location.

The SC’s order said, “The emergency stocks shall be created within the next four days and is to be replenished on a day to day basis, in addition to the existing allocation of oxygen supply to the States.”

“Having said that, we are cognizant of the socio-economic impact of a lockdown, specifically, on the marginalized communities. Arrangements must be made beforehand to cater to the needs of these communities,” it added.

In addition, the top Court asked the Centre to prepare a national policy on admissions to hospitals within two weeks following the second wave of COVID-19. Due to lack of local residential proof, patients should not be denied hospitalization or essential drugs in any state.

SC orders that Centre and States shall notify all Chief Secretaries/DGP/CP about any restriction on info on social media or harassment caused to individuals seeking or delivering help on any platform will draw a coercive exercise of jurisdiction by this Court.

The top Court ordered that the Centre, within two weeks, shall formulate a national policy on admissions to hospitals which all State Governments shall follow.

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