The Madhya Pradesh High Court on Friday appealed to all State Governments and their respective Police and Transport authorities for providing green corridors to the tankers carrying liquid medical oxygen involving its interstate movement to ensure timely delivery of oxygen at their desired destinations.
A division bench comprising of Chief Justice Mohammad Rafiq and Justice Atul Sreedharan ordered thus:
“This Court impresses upon all the State Governments and through them, their Police Authorities and the Transport Authorities, to provide green corridors to the Tankers carrying Liquid Medical Oxygen involving inter-state movement, at par with ambulances, so that the oxygen can be timely delivered at the respective destinations, to save the precious human lives in this crucial period.”
The observation came while dealing with a suo moto writ petition and a bunch of petitions highlighting the situation of coronavirus in the State and inaction of the State authorities in performing their duties.
During the course of hearing, JK Jain, Assistant Solicitor General apprised the Bench that the Central Government had taken “serious note” of the incident wherein an oxygen tanker carrying the oxygen allocated to the State of Madhya Pradesh was intercepted by police officers of Uttar Pradesh to be diverted to Jhansi.
It was also submitted by the ASG that the Central Government shall ensure that no such incident is repeated in future and informed the Bench that a direction has been passed by the Union of India to all the State Governments to ensure free movement of the tankers carrying the oxygen to the respective delivery destinations.
Furthermore, dealing with the aspect of dearth of oxygen supply in the State, the Court while pulling up the State Government observed that the situation on ground was “totally different than what was portrayed by the State in Action report”. The Court also took serious note of newspaper reports showing various deaths due to the lack of supply of oxygen and observed thus:
“Even the State has not made any serious effort to dispute the veracity of the alleged deaths of several persons in the hospitals due to non-availability of oxygen. Death of citizens, so large in number, is really heart-rending. It is a pity that people are dying in the hospitals due to lack of oxygen.”