The Bombay High Court on Tuesday heard a PIL filed by Dilip Desai a 55-year-old social worker from Kolhapur who sought requisitioning of the premises of an old district court for it be used by the government hospital located on the opposite side for treatment of Non-Covid 19 patients as the hospital is a full fledged dedicated Covid-19 Hospital.
Division bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice KK Tated heard petitioner's advocates SB Talekar and Pradnya Talekar and concluded that the High Court through its Registrar General, and the Principal District Judge, Kolhapur ought to have been included as respondents. Thus, direction was passed to add both as respondents in the matter.
The petitioner sought directions for the premises of old District and Sessions Judge, Kolhapur, for being used as an extension of Chhatrapati Pramila Raje District Hospital, Kolhapur to combat the crisis triggered by Covid-19. He reasoned that although there are other private owned super-speciality hospitals in the district, CPR hospital is the only government hospital having super speciality facilities. It is the only hospital available for the poor and downtrodden in the district to approach in case of a health emergency.
The petition states-
"The Old District & Sessions Court, Kolhapur is located just opposite to the CPR hospital. As such it will be convenient for the doctors and other hospital staffers to segregate the regular patients and Covid-19 patients"
Moreover, it is contended by the District Magistrate and the Chairperson of the District Disaster Management Authority requested the District and Sessions Judge to allow use of the old premises which are lying vacant. However, the said request was forwarded to the Building Committee of the High Court but was rejected on May 8.
It is also stated in the PIL that the District Magistrate has requisitioned 20 hostels to be designated as Covid Care Centres, 140 schools and colleges across the district have been converted into quarantine centres. Thus, the administration cannot adopt a separate attitude for requisitioning old court premises, the petitioners argue.
Thus, directions are sought to convert the old district court premises as an extension of the CPR Hospital and to submit a report regarding steps taken by the hospital to segregate Covid and Non-Covid cases.
The matter will now be heard on May 29, 2020.
Click Here To Download Order
Click Here To Download Petition