Delhi

Delhi HC issues notice to AAP MLA for allegedly hoarding oxygen cylinders

The Delhi High Court on Friday issued notice to AAP MLA Imran Hussain on a petition seeking an inquiry into alleged hoarding of oxygen cylinders and arbitrarily distributing it free of cost to COVID-19 patients.

A Bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli also ordered Mr. Hussain to be present in court during the hearing on Monday.

The direction came while hearing a plea by one Vedansh Sharma who showed a Facebook post made by the official page of the Delhi Aam Aadmi Party on Wednesday relating to free distribution of oxygen cylinder from party office.

The Facebook post said that Mr. Husaain will be providing free oxygen from his party office at Ballimaran here and anyone can get oxygen after showing doctor’s prescription, the plea said, adding that Mr. Hussian, who is an MLA from Ballimaran and a Cabinet Minister, is hoarding oxygen cylinders at a time when the entire Delhi is in crisis due to shortage of oxygen.

“Let us first find out where is he [Mr. Hussain] procuring it from. Supposing he is not getting it from refillers in Delhi. Supposing he is getting from Faridabad or some other place and he is giving it to some people in his constituency. Then you can’t have any grievance, since he is augmenting supplies in Delhi,” the High Court observed.

“The gurudrawas are doing it,” the High Court added.

“Look at the pictures [Facebook post]. It is not as if there is a hoarder. There are people standing in line with their cylinders and with their mask on,” the High Court observed.

Senior advocate Rahul Mehra, representing the Delhi government, said if there is veracity in the allegation, Mr. Sharma should go to the local police and make a complaint.

“If at all there is any veracity in these claims, strictest possible action will be taken irrespective of the fact, who that person is. Whether it is Gautam Gambhir or Imran Hussain, anybody who is doing it will not be spared,” Mr Mehra said.

Tele consultation

During the hearing, Mr. Mehra said that the Delhi Medical Association has been asked to give a list of doctors, who are willing to provide tele consultations either on volunteering basis or on line of honorarium proposed for retired government doctors.

The High Court asked the Delhi government on how it plan to augment the tele consultation for COVID-19. “Hundreds of people must be logging in all at once... Every patient will take 5-10 minutes,” the High Court said.

The High Court opined that the Delhi government should make a public appeal and doctors who are confined to home and have the qualification and are willing to offer services, can contact the authorities.

The High Court also asked how the government will ensure that a patient is connected to the same doctor when he or she calls back next day for follow-up.

Beds

The court remarked there was no use of making a waiting list for hospital beds on the Delhi government’s website as a person goes there in emergency and nobody is going to wait in these COVID-19 pandemic days.

The court suggested that patients from the lower income group could be given basic medicines like paracetamol, along with steamers and thermometers as immediate help.


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Printable version | Jun 24, 2021 10:15:16 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/delhi-hc-issues-notice-to-aap-mla-for-allegedly-hoarding-oxygen-cylinders/article34508486.ece

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