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The Delhi High Court has directed the Central Government and the Delhi Government to place on record a list of hospitals where outstation patients who have been camping outside AIIMS, could receive free-of-cost treatment for non COVID-19 ailments. (Karan Seth vs UOI)
The order was passed by a Division bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Yogesh Khanna in a petition preferred by Karan Seth.
It was the Petitioner’s grievance that about hundred outstation patients and their attendants, who were earlier being provided treatment at the AIIMS Delhi have now been denied treatment as AIIMS has now been converted into an exclusive facility to treat COVID-19 patients.
The petitioner submitted that either these patients be provided treatment at AIIMS, or alternatively, at other Government hospitals in Delhi.
It was further pointed that as per an office memorandum issued by the Delhi Government , the facility of cashless treatment in the city was extended only to the residents of Delhi.
The second concern raised by the Petitioner was with respect to the living conditions of the patients. The Court was informed that the patients and their attendants were being housed in Rain Baseras opposite AIIMS, where social distancing norms were not being maintained.
The Petitioner submitted that many of these patients were suffering from serious ailments such as cancer and ran the risk of contracting the virus.
In response to the Delhi Government’s assertion that the occupants of the Rain Baseras were in the process of being shifted to Gargi School Building, Green Park Extension, the Petitioners contended that due to sanitisation issues, the facility was not made operational.
The Delhi Government, however, stated that such issues would be taken care and the process of shifting would be soon completed.
AIIMS stated that its main facility was not an exclusive COVID-19 facility and it continued to treat patients with other ailments. The Court was informed that a few days back, a team of doctors from the AIIMS even visited the Rain Baseras and identified those patients who required hospitalisation.
In view of the submissions, the Court directed the Central Government and the Delhi Government to place on record a list of hospitals where these out-station patients could receive treatment for non COVID-19 ailments, free-of-cost, according to their eligibility.
The Court also directed AIIMS to state whether these patients could be provided treatment at AIIMS itself, as they were receiving earlier.
Status report has been sought on the above aspect, including the issue of housing such patients, before the next date of hearing.
In the meantime, as per the Court’s order, the Petitioner will prepare a list of patients in respect of whom the present petition was preferred.
The matter would be heard next on May 8.
The Petitioner was represented by Senior Advocate Darpan Wadhwa with Advocates Arjun Syal and Karan Seth.
Advocate Anjana Gosain represented Centre.
Delhi Government was represented by Advocates Anupam Srivastava and Dhairya Gupta.
AIIMS was represented by Advocates Anand Varma, Shwetank Singh.
Read the Order: