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Take action on PIL claiming poor state of quarantine centre, HC tells Delhi govt

The Delhi High Court on Thursday directed the Delhi government to treat as a representation a PIL claiming that the quarantine centre at Sultanpuri here for COVID-19 patients is “unhygienic”, “uninhabitable” and lacks medical professionals to monitor them, and ordered it to take “immediate action” on the concerns raised in the plea.

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh asked the Delhi government to take immediate action on the issues raised in the plea as early as possible and practicable.

With the direction, the court disposed of the petition by a student of Jawaharlal Nehru University who has said in her plea that she tested COVID-19 positive while staying at the varsity campus and since there was no quarantine facility in there, she was transferred to the Sultanpuri Isolation Centre.

The student had claimed that to her “utter shock” the quarantine centre was unhygienic and no facilities were given to the patients.

During her four day of stay at the centre, she had found that “patients at the quarantine facility were suffering severely not only on account of their illness but also due to the negligence of the government authorities in providing them with basic facilities like sanitation, food, medicines, clean mattresses and blankets, regular doctor visits, proper monitoring of oxygen, etc”.

She had also alleged in her plea that “not a single person visits these wards, be it a doctor, nurse or any ward officials”.

“The patients manage everything on their own. No doctor or a nurse visits the patients to check their vitals, temperature and oxygen levels. All of them have to come to the ground floor of the building to get checked and to obtain basic medicines.

“Most of the time, the patients have to wait in a line, sometimes even for an hour in the scorching sun to obtain basic medicines..,” the petition had claimed.

The petitioner had sought appointment of a court commissioner to visit the quarantine facility at Sultanpuri and directions to the Delhi government “to follow the recommendation issued by WHO and the guidelines issued by NCDC for implementing quarantine”.

Besides that the petitioner also seeks a clean and hygienic environment by sanitizing and disinfecting the premises, doctor visits thrice a day to the patients in their rooms, PPE kits for sanitation workers at the quarantine centres, periodic checking of oxygen levels of the patients and several other reliefs.

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