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Karnataka HC Dismisses Plea Against Imposing 'Unscientific' Masks On Public [Read Judgment]

21 Jun 2020 7:20 AM GMT
Karnataka HC Dismisses Plea Against Imposing Unscientific Masks On Public [Read Judgment]
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The Karnataka High Court recently refused to entertain a public interest litigation against imposition of the use of the 'unscientific' Masks and PPE's.

SR Krishna Murthy, who claims to be a Life-Fellow of the Insurance Institute of India, had approached the High Court contending that in Indian conditions, use of a mask is most unscientific, and making it compulsory is violative of Article 21 of the Constitution of India.

The bench comprising of the Chief Justice Abhay S. Oka and Justice Nataraj Rangaswamy observed that whether the action of the authorities of making the use of masks mandatory is right or wrong is not an issue which can be decided by a writ Court.  "It is for the experts to decide whether the use of masks should be made mandatory and what category and what type of masks should be used by members of the public. The same is the case with the use of PPE kits.", the bench said.

The bench also refused to accept his plea to not restrict the timings for movement of people at all. His third prayer was quite interesting which reads: Direct Union of India and State of Karnataka to nominate their representative who should be easily available all the time to any Constituent who needs to communicate with the Constituted urgently on any issue that he considers important, as a true feature of a Republic; as India was, in pre-Independence days (when many a king would provide a bell in front of his Court for anybody to ring to claim justice!), which Republican feature is totally missing today; so as to avert a national tragedy like the one that hit the country on 30th October 1984.

Elaborating this plea, the petitioner submitted before the bench that Indira Gandhi in a public speech expressed an apprehension that there is a threat to her life, no one cared and that is how the tragedy happened on 30th October 1984. Therefore, according to him, the Central Government and the State Government must nominate their representatives who should be easily available all the time to anyone who needs to communicate with the Constituent urgently.

The bench, with regard to this plea, said: "The illustration given by the petitioner of the tragedy of 30th October 1984 has no application to the present situation. The State Government has created helplines and there are official email IDs of various departments of the State Government as well as the Central Government. Sending e-mail is a very convenient mode available to the petitioner for seeking redressal of his grievances.

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