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Sunday 5 July 2020

Supreme Court happy with Modi govt’s anti-COVID measures

'Even the critics of the government are acknowledging that it is doing a good job,' CJI SA Bobde said in the course of a discussion in the Supreme Court on ensuring the safety of those attending proceedings

The Supreme Court on 23 March praised the strictness shown by the Narendra Modi government in dealing with the coronavirus disease (COVID) outbreak in the country. The highest court appreciated that the government was taking all necessary steps. The government is “very active”, Chief Justice SA Bobde observed during a hearing.

The apex court said even critics of the government were praising the lockdown and other safeguards. “Everybody is saying the government is acting very responsible and doing a good job,” the CJI Bobde said, adding, “Even the critics of the government are acknowledging that it is doing a good job.”

During the hearing of a case, a bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde said that the entire nation had recognised that the government was taking all necessary steps to fight the COVID outbreak. “The government is doing a very good job,” the bench comprising also Justice LN Rao and Justice Surya Kant said.

The Supreme Court was hearing a petition related to the COVID outbreak. The petitioner demanded that the court order the government to take more necessary steps to deal with the infectious disease.

The petitioner demanded further that the number of COVID-19 test laboratories be increased.

After the hearing, the court referred the petition to increase COVID lab testing centres to the government.

The CJI-led bench said, “We are informed that the government has become very active and is taking (necessary) steps.”

During the hearing, the court made a decision on who needed to be present in its premises and for what kind of hearing. It will be the responsibility of the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association, the court ruled.

Supreme Court repeats its appreciation for govt efforts in video conference

CJI Bobde expressed his appreciation for the government again in the course of a discussion in the Supreme Court on ensuring the safety of those attending proceedings. Senior advocate Dushyant Dave, who is the Supreme Court Bar Association president, pleaded before the CJI to let the apex court go on a vacation, given the “exceptional circumstances” and the grave safety concerns.

Earlier, the association had urged the CJI to completely shut the court operations in the resolution issued on Sunday. “Considering the outbreak of the pandemic coronavirus and in view of the Delhi government notification dated 22 March, vide which there has been a total lockdown in Delhi till 31 March, and with a view to safeguard and protect the court, the members of the bar office staff and also the registry staff it is a resolved that the members of SCAORA will not be appearing in the court till 4 April,” the resolution had said.

The resolution said that the borders and public transport had been shut down. It added that members commuting from Gurugram, Ghaziabad and Noida would not be able to reach the court.

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