[Oxygen Shortage] Delhi High Court Issues Notice To Suppliers Of Liquid Oxygen, Directs Govt. To Create Portal For Taking Donations Of Medical Equipments From People Abroad

first_imgNews Updates[Oxygen Shortage] Delhi High Court Issues Notice To Suppliers Of Liquid Oxygen, Directs Govt. To Create Portal For Taking Donations Of Medical Equipments From People Abroad Srishti Ojha29 April 2021 11:02 PMShare This – xThe Delhi High Court on Thursday issued notice to all the suppliers of liquid oxygen to the Government of NCT of Delhi after certain issues as regards to the failure of supplying oxygen by the aforesaid suppliers were addressed before the Bench.A division bench comprising of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Rekha Palli also directed the Delhi Government to create a portal for individuals and organisations abroad of NRIs & others who are keen to provide aid and assistance for battling the pandemic in India by gifting medical equipments like medical concentrators etc.Advertisement On Oxygen Supply and Coordination Between Oxygen Suppliers and HospitalsAn intervention was made by Batra Hospital highlighting the issue of oxygen shortage by stating that although the Delhi Government had issued addendum for 50% oxygen has to be supplied by Goyal and Inox, however, the Court was informed the Goyal had refused to make the supply.Noting the said grievance, the Court assured that the problem shall be solved immediately and contacted Goyal suppliers during the course of hearing.Advertisement In view of this, Rahul Mehra submitted that a meeting can be held held by the Amicus with all the suppliers today and that all of them need to act in professional manner. He also went ahead to argue that the suppliers were not giving their timings as to when will their oxygen supply reach to hospitals. While noting that INOX has effected the supply however Goyal suppliers did not, the Bench issued notice to all the suppliers of liquid oxygen to the Government of NCT of Delhi and ordered thus:Advertisement Advertisement “Mr. Mehra submits that suppliers be asked to present in next hearing and emphasised they are bound to comply with 27th april order. Notice issued to all suppliers of liquid oxygen to NCT Delhi.When they are present, they should have date of supplies made by them, quantity wise and time wise.”At this point, the Court also noted the submissions of Mehra that allocation order will be re examined and necessary changes will be made.Advertisement Advertisement Advertisement However, the Court left the issue of individual consumption to the GNCTD.The Court also took note of the submissions made by Advocate Aditya Prasad that an address can be given out by the Government on their website so that people willing to donate can do so at collection places. The Bench also asked Mehra to consider creating a portal on their website for such contributions.”We’ll do whatever is required. We’ll create address and publicise it.” Mehra submitted.”Let GNCTD create a portal on their website for this purpose such that person staying abroad desirous of sending is able to ship equipments to India in name of GNCTD.” The Bench ordered.On Allocation of OxygenIn the second half of the hearing, the Court begun by clarifying that its earlier order dated 27.14.2021 directing the taking over of Seth Air’s (one of the suppliers) plant in Palwal would not adversely affect allocation made to the State of Haryana. During the course of hearing, the Court was apprised by the submissions of Senior Advocate Rao and Malvika Trivedi that a mechanism must be put in place for availability of oxygen cylinders for patients in home care also.Agreeing to the aforesaid submission, the Court suggested that such allocation be made from hospitals to individuals.”So far as individual consumers are concerned Mr Mehra you’ll have to make some provisions. Its a difficult situation. We are trying to solve issue with hospitals so now individuals are left behind.” Justice Sanghi remarked at the outset. At this juncture, Rahul Mehra appearing for GNCTD assured the Bench that he will get assistance from the requisite department on the aspect.On Custom Duty and Cess Duty on Covid Related EquipmentsASG Chetan Sharma also apprised the Court about the fact that the Cess duty custom prioritisation of the oxygen concentrators and related equipments have been put in list and waived off from any duty or cess. “Central board of indirect tax and Customs have issued directions to clear all RTPCR equipments and related COVID equipments from Priority. These products are to be prioritised. There is also a dedicated help desk in place.” Sharma submitted at the outset.In view of this, the Court ordered thus:”ASG has submitted that notifications have been issued Regarding exemption from custom duty of medicines like Remdesivir, etc. and other covid related equipments. Let notifications regarding this by Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs be placed on record.” The court also directed a Status report to be filed as regards to the import of covid related equipments pending clearances.On Blackmarketing and Other IssuesAdvocate Shadan Farasat appearing for the Delhi Government submitted before the Court that apart from the issue of blackmarketing of covid drugs, the issue of supply of such drugs also need to be taken care of. In view of this, he submitted before the Court that the Pharmaceutical Authority should also be made a party to the case.Noting that the Supreme Court was already seized of the issue concerned, the High Court stated that it is not inclined to go into the issue even though the Apex Court has not restrained so. The Court also opined that it will deal with the issue with are Delhi centric only.Furthermore, highlighting the transparency in distribution of Remdesivir, Professor Sanjay Dhir for IIT Delhi suggested the Court that it is important for the hospitals to put a requisition and give an OTP to patients for them to track the Remdesivir, whether it has reached the concerned hospital and has been administered.In view of the aforesaid submission, the court ordered that the said exercise between NIC, GNCTD and Mr Dhir be completed in one day and that it is expected that the portal becomes operational by the day after.While dealing with the aforesaid issues, the Bench however kept pending individual matters pertaining to Advocate Amit Sharma’s Covid positive brother in law who’s unable to get an ICU Bed, case of a court master’s father has been asked to move out of delhi judicial COVID facility in Dwarka and other similar matters.Noting that the Supreme Court will be hearing the suo moto matter relating to covid essential supplies today morning, the Court while putting the matter for hearing today in the afternoon, orally remarked that it wanted to have Supreme Court’s observation before taking up the matter again.During the first half of the hearing, the Court had sought Centre’s response regarding Delhi government’s submissions with respect to differences in demanded and allocated amounts of oxygen supply to various states. The development came after the Delhi Government submitted before the Court that Delhi has been allocated less oxygen than demanded quantity than other states to fight the current Covid19 crisis.Edited by Nupur ThapliyalTags#Delhi High Court COVID 19 second covid wave Oxygen Supply Oxygen Shortage Oxygen Crisis Delhi government GNCTD Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more