HE Supreme Court Tuesday stayed the Allahabad High Court’s order imposing a lockdown in Prayagraj, Lucknow, Varanasi, Kanpur Nagar and Gorakhpur.
A bench led by CJI SA Bobde also appointed senior advocate PS Narasimha as amicus curiae to assist the top court in the matter.
The order was passed on an urgent appeal filed by the Uttar Pradesh government, challenging the high court’s order which, according to the government, was beyond the domain of the court.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said the state government had taken various steps and it proposed to take some more to contain Covid19 but to virtually impose the lockdown in the five major cities might not be the correct approach of the high court.
The top court will now hear the matter after two weeks.
The high court yesterday castigated the UP government for its failure to contain the spread of Covid19.
“Those at the helm of affairs of governance are to be blamed for the present chaotic health problems and more so when there is a democracy which means a government of the people, by the people and for the people, a bench of Justices Siddhartha Varma and Ajit Kumar said.
The High Court said if people died in the pandemic in large numbers due to the paucity of medical aid, the governments would be to blame for failing to counter the pandemic even after one long year of experience and learning
“….we have enough to spend on elections and very little to spend on public health”, the High Court said.
It added in any civilised society if the public health system is not able to meet the challenges and people die for want of proper medication, it means there has been no proper development.
“It is a shame that while the Government knew of the magnitude of the second wave it never planned things in advance”, the HC said.