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Delhi HC issues directions to help city’s riot victims

A view of the riot-affected Chand Bagh-Karawal Nagar in northeast Delhi on February 26, 2020. Sandeep Saxena

A view of the riot-affected Chand Bagh-Karawal Nagar in northeast Delhi on February 26, 2020. Sandeep Saxena   | Photo Credit: Sandeep Saxena

Bench says it is time to reach out to the affected and build confidence

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday issued a series of directions to the Delhi Police, State government and other agencies for providing all necessary assistance to those affected by the violence in north-east Delhi.

 

The directions were given on a petition seeking police protection for the safe passage of the injured persons, who were earlier admitted to Al Hind Hospital, to other hospitals.

The petition was first taken up during an urgent midnight hearing at the residence of Justice S. Muralidhar, during which the Court had ordered the police to ensure safe passage to the victims.

Safe passage

Later on Wednesday, the court directed the police to provide information and safe passage to the families of the deceased and make security arrangements to ensure that burials and cremations were carried out with dignity.

 

The Bench of Justice Muralidhar and Justice Talwant Singh said it was time to reach out to the affected and engage in confidence building.

When informed that the victims at Al Hind Hospital had been shifted, the court observed that it demonstrated how police officers were waiting for orders to act.

The court directed that Special Commissioner of Police Pravir Ranjan would ensure adequate number of help desks and number of persons assigned to handling distress calls. The police were also told to explore the possibility of taking help from the Civil Defence volunteers and Home Guard personnel.

Shelter, amenities

The police have been directed to arrange for safe passage to fire tenders and ambulances. The Health Secretary and Fire Services Director have also been given necessary orders.

 

The State government has been told to provide shelter and basic amenities, including medicines, to the displaced. If necessary, rehabilitation centres have to be set up.

Night Magistrates will be on duty to attend to urgent matters. The police would file applications to the District Judges for the appointment of Night Magistrates for two weeks, beginning Thursday, the court said.

Zubeda Begum, the Amicus Curiae, will be appointed as the nodal officer for coordination between the victims and the authorities.

Helplines publicised

The area Assistant Commissioner of Police’s phone number and other helpline numbers will be publicised.

Secretary of the Delhi State Legal Services Authority has been directed to ensure that its helplines work round-the-clock. The helplines will also be publicised.

The Director, Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences, will provide sufficient numbers of qualified professionals to attend to riot victims suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The next hearing in the case has been fixed for Friday.

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Printable version | Apr 2, 2020 12:44:50 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/delhi-hc-issues-directions-to-help-citys-riot-victims/article30923251.ece

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