Shimla, November 25
Expressing concern over the shortage of oxygen cylinders, the Himachal Pradesh High Court has directed the state government to file an affidavit about the steps taken to ensure cylinder availability in Covid-dedicated hospitals.
It also sought information on the mechanism developed for reducing the duration of Covid tests and steps taken to create additional beds and other facilities.
A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice L Narayana Swamy and Justice Anoop Chitkara passed these orders after taking suo moto cognisance of a report–“IGMC Covid ward packed to capacity after spurt in cases”–published in The Tribune on November 10, 2020.
Amicus curiae BC Negi, a senior advocate, maintained that the state had failed to fulfil its constitutional obligation of providing adequate medical services. There was lack of isolation waiting areas for symptomatic persons who visited hospital for testing or follow-up, he contended.