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SC Calls Delhi Govt-LG Meeting Over Health Crisis “Disappointing”

The SC directed the Delhi government to hold a meeting with LG Najeeb Jung, and not indulge in a blame game.

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Supreme Court of India. (Photo: Reuters)

In a stinging criticism of the handling of dengue and chikungunya menace in Delhi, the Supreme Court on Thursday said the authorities here were "not interested" and the people have been "left to suffer".

It also expressed disappointment over the outcome of Wednesday’s meeting between the Lieutenant Governor and Delhi government on curbing vector-borne diseases like dengue and chikungunya and asked them to hold another meeting on Thursday to firm up steps to check the diseases.

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"These people are not interested and the people of Delhi are left to suffer," the Bench of Justices MB Lokur and Amitava Rao observed and asked the LG and Delhi Government to hold a meeting at 5:30 pm today to discuss the matter.

During the hearing, Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar, appearing for Delhi Chief Secretary, told the Bench that LG Najeeb Jung would convene a meeting in which those officers, who were directed to attend the meeting by the court in its 4 October order, would be present.

We expect the participants to keep the interest of people of Delhi in mind, while doing the entire exercise, we expect that the action taken is collaborative and cooperative.
Justice MB Lokur and Amitava Rao

The apex court had on 4 October directed Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Health Minister Satyendra Jain to hold a meeting with LG Najeeb Jung, to chalk out a strategy for curbing dengue and chikungunya in the national capital, while warning Delhi government against indulging in the blame-game.

The Bench had refused to go into allegations and counter-allegations over power tussle between the LG and the Arvind Kejriwal-led government and said "no substitute" should attend the meeting with LG, except whose names have been proposed.

The apex court had on 3 October had imposed a cost of Rs 25,000 on Jain for failing to file an affidavit disclosing names of officials, whom he had alleged of not cooperating in checking the menace of dengue and chikungunya in Delhi. 

It had earlier taken suo motu cognisance of the death of a seven-year-old boy due to dengue last year after being allegedly denied treatment by five private hospitals and the subsequent suicide by his parents.

The five hospitals – Max hospital in Saket, Moolchand Khairatiram Hospital in Lajpat Nagar, Aakash Hospital in Malviya Nagar, Saket City Hospital and Irene Hospital, Kalkaji – were issued showcause notices to explain why their registration should not be cancelled for allegedly refusing to admit the boy.

(With inputs from PTI)

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