Senior Advocate Dinesh Kumar Goswami has written a letter to the Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, highlighting the dire need for extending the nationwide lockdown to April 30, 2020, in view of the incessant increase in Coronavirus infections PAN India.
The letter states, inter alia, that the rate at which the cases of infections have increased in India, especially since March 30, 2020, it is "neither advisable nor prudent to start the normal working" of courts, pointedly because of "all the courts remaining closed / non functioning / partially functioning have left the courts burdened with heavy load of work in the work flow"
The letter states,
"Country wide lockdown by our Prime Minister was an appreciated step even by the World Health Organisation. The intention behind locking down the entire country was in anticipation that in 21 days of lockdown the situation all over the country would be normalised, however on account of certain developments during the lockdown the cases infected from the deadly disease i.e. Corona Virus have drastically increased after 30.03.2020"
In light of this, Senior Advocate Goswami has requested the top court to suspend the summer vacations of courts across the country as well as of educational institutions.
"......the lockdown maybe extended at least up to 30.04.2020 and it is also urged that the summer vacations of the Educational Institutions and all the Courts all over the country including the Hon'ble ,the Supreme Court of India may be suspended considering the present emergent epidemic situation" states Mr. Goswami.
In related news, Odisha became the first Indian state to extend the ongoing lockdown. On Thursday, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said that his government has decided to extend the lockdown period in Odisha till April 30.
Reportedly, the Prime Minister also hinted at extending the national lockdown by 15 days. Accordingly, the PM said "I have been speaking to chief ministers and district collectors… the common refrain is that it is not easy to lift the lockdown," the prime minister said. "We need to be strict in implementing social distancing norms. So be it lifting or extending the lockdown, the general mood is that it will not be possible to lift the lockdown at once."
Modi has called another meeting of all chief ministers on April 11 for consultations, after which the Centre could take a final decision on the lockdown.