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Delhi HC refuses to entertain plea for SIT probe in deaths due to shortage of oxygen
New Delhi [India], May 4, 2021 (ANI): The Delhi High Court on Tuesday refused to entertain a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) praying for the investigation to be carried out by a court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) and affix the liability and accountability on the Central and state governments in ongoing deaths due to shortage of medical oxygen.
The Bench of Justice DN Patel and Justice Jasmeet Singh after hearing the submission of the petitioner decided to "dismissed as withdrawn" the petition. The plea sought direction to constitute an SIT and affix the liability and accountability on the government both Central and state and also the respective persons and organization involved pertaining to their dereliction of duty and negligent role in failing to curb the shortage of medical oxygen supply in the hospitals and elsewhere in GNCT of Delhi during the pandemic in the country.
The petition stated that despite an early warning signal by the experts about the onset of the second wave this callous attitude on the part of several individuals and organizations has led to the death of several thousands of innocent and helpless people all over India.
Till today nobody has taken responsibility and liability for the shortage in supply of medical oxygen and unpreparedness for the same during the pandemic, it said. The infected people are thus subjected to inhumane conditions by being exposed to a situation where they are left with no oxygen supply and left with no option but to strive for the lives and others being forced to buy oxygen being sold in the black market, the plea claimed.
In the span of one month, the lives lost due to lack of oxygen cannot be calculated in numbers as there is no correct data available with the government, however, if we rely on the newspaper reports and reports based on interviews of family members of the deceased persons, it can be said that over a thousand of people have lost their lives owing to lack of oxygen supply on proper time during the pandemic, it added.
The people have a right to life under Article 21 of the Constitution of India. It is one of the most sacred fundamental rights given to its citizen by our Constitution. Since the right to life is protected under this article hence refusing or unable to provide medical assistance to save one's life amounts to the curtailment of such right, hence a violation of Article 21 and any violation of the same during the present scenario amounts to culpable homicide, the plea reads. (ANI)