HC seeks Delhi govt's response on contempt plea over order to regulate online pathological labs

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Representative image
Representative image

New Delhi [India], November 12 (ANI): The Delhi High Court on Thursday sought a response from the Delhi government on a contempt application seeking initiation of proceedings against the latter's top officials and others for alleged non-compliance with an order to take action and regulate online pathological labs.

A single-judge bench of Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva, after hearing the submissions, directed the Delhi government counsel to take instruction as he submitted that the Clinical Establishment Act is not applicable in the national capital.

The bench issued notice to the parties and listed it for further hearing on January 29, 2021.

Advocate Shashank Deo Sudhi, appearing for the petitioner, submitted that the online aggregator like 'healthian' and '1 mg' are illegally operating in Delhi. He further submitted that these online aggregators are playing with the lives of the common people and must be banned.

The plea sought initiation of contempt proceedings against Delhi Chief Secretary, Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Directors General of Health Service and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) for allegedly not complying with a court order to take action against illegal online health service aggregators operating in Delhi and to regulate online pathological labs.

The contempt petition, moved by one Rohit Jain, said that the respondent has completely failed to comply with the said order of this court by not taking appropriate legal actions against online health aggregators despite the direction.

"The court had on August 6 directed the concerned respondent authorities to initiate action in accordance with law against any illegal online health service aggregators operating in Delhi in violation of the applicable law including the Clinical Establishment (Registration and Regulations) Act, 2010, if applicable, or in violation of any rules, regulations or government policies applicable to the facts of the case. Action will be initiated in accordance with law against such violators of the law as expeditiously as possible and practicable, after giving an adequate opportunity of being heard to the concerned parties," the plea said.

The plea also alleged that the respondents are equally responsible for restraining the illegal practices of online aggregators which are freely being carried out under the eyes of these officials in utter violations of the rules and regulations laid down by statutes and the guidelines issued by the respondents from time to time ever since the outbreak of deadly COVID-19.

It also said that several illegal online aggregators are advertising freely by offering attractive packages for body check-ups including the test for COVID-19 through SMSs or various online modes and added that the petitioner has received advertisements of online aggregators through e-mail for getting tested.

The plea further alleged that the respondents' officials have been playing with the precious lives of the innocent people by promoting unqualified, unregistered medical practitioners to sign the pathological report and exposing the common people to the mercy of untrained and highly incompetent medical/ pathological professional. (ANI)

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