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Ex-Law Minister writes to CJI: Act against ill-treatment of Covid-19 victims

In his letter, dated June 8, he has specifically referred to two alleged incidents from Madhya Pradesh and Puducherry.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: June 11, 2020 6:14:44 am
Ashwini Kumar, Ashwini Kumar letter to to CJI, ill-treatment of Covid-19, Covid-19 victims, Covid-19 deaths, Covid-19 tracker Former Law Minister and senior advocate Ashwani Kumar. (File Photo)

Former Law Minister and senior advocate Ashwani Kumar has written to Chief Justice of India S A Bobde and other justices of the apex court, urging them to take suo motu cognizance of reports that coronavirus patients are being ill-treated and dead bodies manhandled.

In his letter, dated June 8, he has specifically referred to two alleged incidents from Madhya Pradesh and Puducherry.

“The tragic and condemnable sight of a Covid-19 patient being chained to a bed in a hospital in Madhya Pradesh and another sight in Puducherry of a dead body being thrown in a pit for burial, has shocked the conscience of the Republic committed to human dignity under the Constitution, which recognizes dignity as a core constitutional value at the pinnacle in the hierarchy of non-negotiable constitutional rights,” he said.

He said these incidents were a grave infraction of the citizen’s right to die with dignity, recognized by the apex court on various occasions. Kumar pointed out that the Supreme Court and different high courts have in the past given judgements declaring that the right to die with dignity and right to decent burial or cremation is fundamental.

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“These judgments constitute the law of the land and are binding on all authorities, as actualizing the promise of the Constitution,” he said adding that “since the Court has the duty and the power to ensure that the law declared by it is actually enforced, it is requested that the Court takes suo-motu notice of the matter.

Kumar has also referred to the situation in Delhi saying the “notified protocols for cremation in the capital city, reported piling up of bodies in hospitals and mortuaries, non-availability of adequate cremation/ burial grounds and the reported non-functioning of electric crematoriums constitute distressing and an unacceptable violation of Right to Die with Dignity.”

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First published on: 11-06-2020 at 05:05:42 am
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