Stop police atrocities in name of lockdown: Patna HC

Stop police atrocities in name of lockdown: Patna HC slams Nitish Kumar government

Earlier this month, the Patna HC had suggested that the Nitish government should hand over the health services in the state to the Armed Forces Medical Services

Representative Image. Credit: PTI File Photo

The Patna High Court has strongly reprimanded the Nitish Kumar government in Bihar for the police atrocities being committed in the name of enforcing lockdown in the state.

Terming several reports of police high-handedness with the relatives of Covid-19 patients as “unlawful”, the court said such police atrocity was not only unlawful, it should be be immediately stopped.

The order was passed by a division bench of Patna High Court comprising Chief Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice S Kumar while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by an activist, Shivani Kaushik.

The HC instructed the Bihar government to ensure that such incidents of police high-handedness with the relatives of Covid-19 patients do not take place any more.

Read | Covid-19 lockdown in Bihar extended till June 1

Of late, several complaints of police atrocities have poured in, where the cops reportedly roughed up even those who were on the way to hospitals to meet the Covid-19 patients or provide food to the admitted patients.

Earlier this month, the Patna High Court had suggested that the Nitish government should hand over the health services in the state to the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS) if it (Bihar govt) was not competent enough to handle the situation.

The bench, then headed by Justice Chakradhari Sharan Singh, was all the more peeved when the Advocate General told the HC that it was a sorry situation that despite putting best efforts, the court was not reposing faith in the state government.

“The State Government should feel sorry....In fact, we feel ashamed of ourselves that since April 15, we have been reposing trust in the action and assurances of the government....We feel ashamed that we only passed orders. Rather we should have adopted a pro-active approach instead of relying on Bihar government’s assurances. We could not intervene properly to protect the fundamental right to life of the people under Article 21,” the High Court had observed.

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