Tripura High Court Orders COVID Testing of Prison Inmates and Children in Orphanages

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Facts

The Court had taken Suo Moto cognizance of the problems arising from the covid situation in the state.  The court had earlier asked the state to file an affidavit regarding the covid situation. This order was given after evaluating the affidavit. 

Arguments of the State

The state highlighted the steps taken to contain the pandemic. The arrangements made for beds, types of equipment were stated. The state also provided details of the vaccination drive and the availability of vaccines. The state also said that the oxygen obtained under the oxygen policy of the Government of India was sufficient for its needs. 

Analysis of the Court

The Court observed that the number of positive cases reported in orphanages is very high. The young children in the orphanages are at a greater risk of being exposed to covid. Thus they need special protection. Also, it was observed that since the state had restricted the movement of the prison inmates by due authority of law it had the responsibility to ensure that their health is not compromised during the imprisonment. 

Order

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The Court ordered the state to test the maximum number of prison inmates to ensure that their health is not compromised. The Court recommended the creation of a round the clock helpline for covid management. The Court also said that the judiciary would not hear non-urgent cases till 31st May and those days will be treated as holidays for the purpose of the Limitation Act. 

Click here to view Judgement.


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