HC orders strict action against those hiding travel history

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 3/26/2020 12:11:18 AM

SRINAGAR, Mar 25: The High Court on Tuesday directed ordered strict action those who are hiding their travel history even as it asked authorities of Jammu and Kashmir as well as Ladakh to enforce "stringently" their orders and notifications regarding all disclosures including the travel history, quarantining and isolation.
Hearing two PILs, a division bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Rajesh Bindal observed that judicial notice can be taken of the several complaints being made in the electronic and the print media regarding persons who are concealing their foreign travel history.
"Even though they are required to disclose their travel history, "they are concealing it) in order to escape the mandatory quarantine," the bench observed.
"Some of such persons have been found to be infected and huge public resources have been expended on tracking, not only these persons, but their several contacts during the period upto their detection," the court said and directed direct the authorities of the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir as well as Ladakh to enforce their notifications, instructions and orders regarding all disclosures including the travel history, quarantining and isolation stringently.
"All authorities of the Union Territories shall take strict measures to ensure that all requirements are strictly enforced," the court said, underling that violation of any Government notification or breach should be strictly punished in accordance with law.
In another direction, the court ordered the Secretary PHE to ensure an equitable distribution of water to all residents of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. "Similar examination may be undertaken in the Union Territory of Ladakh as well."
The court direction followed submissions by Monika Kohli, Amicus Curiae, that there was dire need of continuous availability of water in order to ensure the hygiene for prevention of the infection during the quarantine.
Monika Kohli pointed out that the Public Health Engineering Department was responsible for the maintenance of the roster for water supplies in Union Territory. She submitted that the roster is extremely unequal and disproportionate to the requirement of the colonies and requires to be rationalized.
Meanwhile, Ashok Kumar Srivastava, Chief General Manager, BSNL J&K Telecom Circle, Jammu-12 was present in Court. He submitted a report, stating that video-conferencing through lease lines between the two Juvenile Justice Boards is the optimal solution.
"On this aspect, for want of approval of the financial estimates conveyed to the (mission director) ICPS, this matter was not proceeded with further. As per the report submitted by the BSNL, the estimates were conveyed to the Social Welfare Department on 15th November, 2018," the court said, adding, "It cannot be denied that the BSNL would be the expert agency, whose opinion would bind the consideration by the authorities.
It is also common knowledge that dependence on broadband connectivity for video-conferencing is not an optimal solution and the same is often jeopardised on account of connectivity issues." Srivastava also informed that he would have the estimate which was submitted on November 15 last year, re-examined and fresh estimates would be submitted to the Mission Director, ICPS within two days. "Let the same be so done. The same would be examined at the earliest," the court added.



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