T’gana HC ‘disappointed’ over govt response to petitions on COVID-19

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Hyderabad: Calling them “wishy-washy”, Telangana high court on Monday expressed disappointment over the state government’s response to public interest litigation petitions related to COVID-19.

A bench consisting of high court chief justice Hima Kohli and justice VIjayasen Reddy reprimanded if the State was contending for the position of COVID-19 topper in the country.

“We are very unhappy with your affidavit as it does not contain any of the details like measures to check footfall in cinema halls and other public places,” the bench said, as quoted by The Hindu.

The bench expressed displeasure over Advocate General B.S Prasad’s comments that the state government is ‘all geared up’ and is following central government’s guidelines on COVID-19, and pointed that the Centre had asked states to formulate their own guidelines on the issue.

“What are you going to make of the people of the State….sitting ducks?” the Chief Justice Kohli remarked.

The bench sought specific circulars to check footfall at cinema halls, banquet halls, malls and public places amid rising infections in the state. Justice Reddy also asked the AG if the government had any problem in restricting the number of people thronging pubs and bars.

Noting that “it was a desperate situation and required desperate action by the State”, Chief Justice Kohli said, “Sorry for being tough, but it is a question of life and death of people”.

Telangana reported 4,009 fresh COVID-19 cases pushing the tally to over 3.55 lakh, while the toll rose to 1,838 with 14 more fatalities, the state government said in a bulletin on Monday.