Govt.’s unpreparedness to face the second wave is very forthcoming: KSLSA panel
The High Court of Karnataka has asked the State Advocate-General to hold a meeting of various non-governmental organisations, advocates of the petitioners who have filed PIL pleas on issues related to COVID-19, and other stakeholders to assess the impact of partial lockdown on food security of weaker sections of society and required relief measures.
The court also said that the government would have to come out with concrete steps that they propose to take for helping the weaker sections like providing ration, etc.
A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and Justice Aravind Kumar issued the directions when A-G Prahuling K. Navadgi said he would hold meetings with the advocates representing the petitioners on considering issues raised in the petitions.
Meanwhile, the Bench directed the government to look into the recommendations made by a committee set up by the Karnataka State Legal Services Authority (KSLSA) for assessing the impact of a sudden surge of the second wave of COVID-19.
The committee, comprising two retired judges of the High Court, A.N. Venugoapala Gowda and K.N. Keshavanarayana, said a third wave of COVID-19 could not be ruled and it was essential for the State government to appropriately prepare for such a disaster in future and formulate a plan as “unpreparedness on the part of the government to face the present second wave of COVID-19 is very much forthcoming”. The State could face the situation only if the government framed an adequate disaster management plan, the committee said.
The committee also said it had learnt that private hospitals were preferring patients from non-government quota as they could charge unlimited fees.
“It is credibly learnt that private hospitals are hiding their actual bed strength. Further, private oxygen suppliers are preferring oxygen supply to home instead of hospitals due to price factor. It is necessary to issue strict directions to the private oxygen suppliers and hospitals to cooperate with the government agency in combating COVID-19,” the committee said in its report to the court.
The committee also said that proper health assistance was required for home quarantined COVID-19 patients as health condition of such patients was deteriorating owing to lack of monitoring by medical experts.
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