Bombay HC orders deployment of additional police force at all government hospitals
BL Soni

Taking note of the mass gatherings of migrant workers, who are thronging to government hospitals to get a medical certificate, the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court has ordered the deployment of additional police force outside them. The HC has ordered the authorities to deploy the force with immediate effect.

A bench of Justice Anil Kilor was hearing a bunch of petitions along with a suo motu petition taken up by the court after taking into account the conditions of thousands of migrant workers, who are stranded in various districts in the state owing to the nation-wide lockdown.

During the course of the hearing, the amicus curiae (friends of the court) pointed out that after the union government granted permission to stranded migrants to go to their hometowns, a large number of them started gathering at government hospitals to obtain medical certificates.

Notably, the government had said that only migrants with a valid certificate would be allowed to travel to their hometown.

The bench was informed that over 500 of such migrants had gathered at the state-run Indira Gandhi Medical College and Hospital, Nagpur. "Due to lack of police bandobast and security, social distancing norms were not being followed by migrant workers. Therefore, a request has been made to direct concerned authorities to provide necessary police bandobast, so that migrants coming for medical certificates are compelled to observe the strict norms of social distancing," Justice Kilor noted in his orders.

Accordingly, the judge ordered additional police deployment with immediate effect.

"In view of the request made in respect to the deployment of police to control migrants who are gathering in large numbers, it is directed to the commissioner of police to make necessary arrangements and deploy additional police force, if required, at all government hospitals to ensure norms regarding the maintenance of social distancing are being followed strictly," Justice Kilor ruled.

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