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SC Refuses To Lift Delhi HC Stay On Delhi Govt Order To Reserve 80% ICU Beds In Pvt Hospitals For COVID-19 Patients

Sanya Talwar
10 Nov 2020 5:40 AM GMT
SC Refuses To Lift Delhi HC Stay On Delhi Govt Order To Reserve 80% ICU Beds In Pvt Hospitals For COVID-19 Patients
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The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to entertain the special leave petition filed by the Delhi government against Delhi High Court's stay on the government order to reserve 80% ICU beds in private hospitals for COVID19 patients. A vacation bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and BR Gavai asked the single bench of the High Court, which is seized of the matter, to hear and decide the...

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to entertain the special leave petition filed by the Delhi government against Delhi High Court's stay on the government order to reserve 80% ICU beds in private hospitals for COVID19 patients. 

A vacation bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and BR Gavai asked the single bench of the High Court, which is seized of the matter, to hear and decide the matter early having regard to the urgency of the situation.

Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain, appearing for the Delhi Government, told the bench that an early adjudication of the matter was necessary as COVID-19 cases are expected to rise in the coming festival season.

The ASG submitted that if the notification had not been stayed, about 5000-6000 more beds would have been available for COVID-19 patients.

The bench also agreed that COVID-19 cases are increasing in Delhi.

"There is no doubt that position is not good and cases are increasing in Delhi. Cases have been increasing and this is a fluctuating state", Justice Ashok Bhushan orally remarked.

However, the bench opined that it was better that the single bench of the High Court itself hear and decide the matter at the earliest instead of the Supreme Court interfering now.

The Delhi Government moved Supreme Court challenging the stay of an Order which reserved 80 per cent hospital beds in private hospitals for Coronavirus Patients. This Stay was granted by Delhi High Court on September 22.

The Capital's government stated that the Delhi High Court had failed to take judicial notice of the COVID-19 pandemic and the steadily rising graph of infections.

Stating that Delhi has always been a preferred location for medical treatment, the Government has averred that the hospitals had moved Delhi High Court against the September 12 order of the Health and Family Welfare Department to "merely guard their own financial interests".

On September 22, a Single Judge Bench of Delhi High Court comprising Justice Navin Chawla had stayed the Delhi Government's September 12 order which had been challenged by Association of Healthcare Providers.

This plea had submitted that no prior consultation had been held with private hospitals to ascertain the demand-supply situation of critical care bends and that ignoring the needs of other severely sick patients requiring critical care and ICU management at these private hospitals was gross injustice.

An appeal against this order was filed by the Delhi Government and a Division Bench of the Delhi High Court comprising of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan, issued notice and adjourned the matter to end of November.

The instant appeal has been filed to lift the stay on the September 12 order of the Delhi Government.

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