Jammu, March 31 (IANS) The J&K High Court on Monday issued a series of directions to the government and its departments, while hearing public interest litigation pertaining to spread of coronavirus in the Union Territory.
The entire proceedings in the matter were conducted through video conferencing and video calls, and both judges heard the matter from their respective residences here.
The division bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Sindhu Sharma, on being apprised by amicus curiae that about 400 pilgrims from Bihar stranded at Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine, are being asked to vacate their current lodgings, directed the Chief Executive Officer, Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board and the Deputy Commissioner, Reasi to ensure that these pilgrims are not asked to vacate their current lodgings and their needs are fully provided till such time as the lockdown persists.
Directions were also issued to Secretary, Department of Health and Medical Education of both the Union Territories together with the IGP, Jammu, IGP, Kashmir and IGP, Ladakh to ensure that complete safety and security is provided to the personnel who are serving at all government facilities. Both UT governments were also directed to ensure that the accommodation, healthcare and the needs of the migrant labourers, if not already provided for, are addressed.
Taking into account the fact that despite nationwide lockdown, a large number of people are resorting to their usual strolls, loitering and morning walks in local parks etc, the court directed the law enforcing authorities and park owning authorities (all municipal corporations, development authorities) to prevent access to public parks, etc which are normally used for such purposes by the citizens.
The Ministry of External Affairs was also directed to look into the aspect of the evacuation of persons who are stranded and need to be evacuated to India on priority.
The Home Secretary of Jammu and Kashmir was directed to file an interim report regarding the functioning of the High Powered Committee constituted for the examination of the prisoners required to be released from prisons.
It also directed the Mission Director ICPS to scrutinise the estimates of Rs 33.64 lakhs for provision of the lease line connections to 24 locations of Juvenile Justice Boards and Observation Homes submitted by the BSNL at an earliest.
The court was apprised that back up facilities in the nature of inverters etc. in the JJBs have been provided so that video conferencing on available apparatus can be conducted.
It appreciated the manner in which the authorities in the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir, as well as Ladakh, are addressing the current crisis.