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Follow social distancing for family, community’s benefit: SC

New Delhi, April 15 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Wednesday said the fight against coronavirus, which forced the government to extend the nationwide lockdown, can only be won with full-fledged people’s cooperation, which is possible through following social distancing norms and supporting implementation of the lockdown.

A bench comprising Justices N.V. Ramana, S.K. Kaul and B.R. Gavai, dismissing two PILs seeking action against police for mercilessly enforcing lockdown, said the statutory human rights body and High Court concerned has already taken cognizance of matter connected with alleged excessive use of force by police.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta submitted that relevant guidelines are already issued in the public domain and the relevant authorities are updated about the same. The court also expressed that the police authorities are working hard to implement the lockdown order and without the cooperation of the citizens, they will not be successful. “The citizens must follow the norms of social distancing and stay indoors for the benefit of their family and community,” said the top court. The apex court said that it will not be appropriate to pass general order or directions as the appropriate authorities have already taken cognizance of the same.

Guwahati-based advocate Amit Goyal moved the apex court to restrict the police authorities in beating public who have ventured out during the lockdown. The petitioner argued that lack of clear guidelines in public movement during the lockdown has led to uncertainty and chaos in certain areas. The police are also not aware about the exemptions granted against movement of public. In light of the same, he approached the apex court seeking issuance of directions to the Union to formulate guidelines to regulate the movement of the public.

The other petition filed by a Delhi-based lawyer sought directions against the Union and state governments amd for registering FIR under Section 302, 304 part II, 323, 325, 341 of IPC against police officers indulging in brutalities during the Covid lockdown.

Dismissing the petitions for the time being, the bench further observed if any specific instances of police excesses were discovered the same can be brought to the notice of the appropriate court.



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