The Delhi High Court on Friday warned that the violation of Covid-19 protocols at markets in the Capital will speed up the possible third wave of the pandemic, reported PTI.
The Delhi High Court took note of WhatsApp images shared by a doctor from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, in which people were seen without masks and not following physical distancing guidelines at markets.
“We have paid a huge price in the second wave,” a vacation bench of Justices Navin Chawla and Asha Menon said, according to the news agency. “We don’t know if there is any household which has not suffered in the second wave, closely or remotely.”
The judges expressed dismay at the behaviour of Delhi’s residents. “The memory of the second wave has not left us, yet people behave in this manner,” they said, according to Bar and Bench. “This is very unfortunate.”
The court said there was a need for stricter measures to stop the spread of Covid-19 in Delhi. It issued notices to the Centre and the Delhi government, asking them to submit a status report in the matter.
The Delhi High Court directed the governments to hold meetings with shopkeepers and vendors’ associations to help enforce the protocols.
The court also instructed the Centre to deploy civil defence and police personnel at markets to curb the violation of protocols, according to Bar and Bench.
Delhi had reported 158 new coronavirus cases and 10 deaths on Thursday. The city’s positivity rate reduced to 0.20%.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had on Sunday announced that all shops in markets and malls will be allowed to stay open between 10 am and 8 pm, while restaurants will be allowed to operate at 50% occupancy. The relaxations were allowed as the number of cases continued to decline.
On June 12, the Delhi chief minister said that his government was ramping up the Capital’s health infrastructure since the risk of the emergence of a third wave of Covid-19 was “very real”.
Kejriwal announced that 22 oxygen plants had been set up at nine hospitals in the city to generate more than 17 metric tonnes of the gas per day. Kejriwal added that six oxygen plants set up by the Centre in Delhi had also begun operating.
Delhi and several other parts of the country struggled with a grave oxygen crisis in the second wave of the pandemic. The acute shortages of medical oxygen as well as medicines forced families and friends of patients to plead for help on social media. The Opposition heavily criticised the Centre for the shortages of medical supplies and courts had also pulled up the Centre.