Coronavirus | Barred floors of city hospital to be used for patients

Floors 4-8 of Billroth Hospital were built without sanction.  

The Supreme Court on Wednesday allowed the Tamil Nadu government to use four “unauthorised” floors of the Billroth Hospital at Shenoy Nagar in Chennai for treating COVID-19 patients.

On June 3 last year, the apex court stayed the demolition of floors four to eight of the hospital. The court further did not permit the use of the floors for any purpose because “their construction was found to be unauthorised and without sanction.”

The hospital, however, recently urged the apex court to use its fourth to seventh floors for housing COVID-19 patients as the State was in need of additional space.

“Even though the need for using available space for the purpose of locating in-patient beds is legitimate and necessary, we see no reason why the said floors should be allowed to be used by the petitioner-hospital. However, since the demand for additional space has been made by the State of Tamil Nadu (represented by Additional Advocate General Balaji Srinivasan) we consider it appropriate to permit Tamil Nadu to use the floors, i.e., fourth to seventh floors of the building for the purpose of dealing with the pandemic,” the court held.

It said the State could utilise the service of any agency, including the hospital, for treating the COVID-19 patients. The court also made it a point to stress that this order “will not create any rights in favour of the petitioner-hospital and have no bearing on the question of regularisation of the said premises which is sought for in the petitions.”

Last year, the apex court agreed to consider the hospital’s case after the Madras High Court directed the State government, the Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority and the Greater Chennai Corporation to raze the top five floors.

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Printable version | Jun 19, 2021 9:30:34 PM |

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