Delhi High Court has refused to provide relief in a plea seeking action against the manufacturers of faulty PPE kits.
The Division Bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan noted that there are enough guidelines in place to ensure quality maintenance of PPE kits.
The court said:
'There are enough guidelines on the specifications for the PPE kits which are issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the Ministry of Textiles. Therefore, there's no need for the court to interfere.'
The court further noted that:
'It ought to be kept in mind that if any Petitioner is alleging the violation of these guidelines, such violator shall be added as a party to such a petition so that notice can be issued to such a violator and action can be taken. As and when such litigation is moved before an appropriate forum, it will be dealt with in accordance with law and policy in force.'
In light of this, the court asked the Petitioner to move his grievance before the appropriate forum.
Filed by Advocate Amit Jain, the writ petition seeks a direction to be issued to the Health Ministry to initiate legal actions as envisaged under The Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 against the manufacturers of faulty/substandard PPE kits under the guise of "COVID-19 kits.
The Petitioner had also asked for the regulation of the import, manufacture, sale and circulation of Personal Protective Equipment Coveralls/kits under the provisions of The Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940.
The Petitioner had argued that the rise in demand for PPE kits has led to the manufacturing of substandard kits which poses serious threats to the frontline health workers and other individuals fighting against the coronavirus.
It is the case of the Petitioner that despite the reporting of multiple instances of manufacturing of faulty PPE kits, no action has been initiated by the Respondents so far under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act.
The petition states:
'Ministry of Textiles took cognisance of the faulty PPE kits being supplied by the local manufacturers and to curb the same it issued further guidelines for the authorised laboratories, thereby prescribing additional conditions and paperwork.'
The Petitioner submitted that the guidelines laid down by the Ministry of Textiles do not provide any penal provision for manufacturing faulty PPE kits.
Therefore, the Petitioner has sought court's direction to the Health Ministry to constitute a commission/body to deal with the menace of manufacture, import and supplying of faulty or substandard Personal Protective Equipment coveralls/kits for the purposes of COVID-19.