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SC tells Centre to ensure timely payment of salaries to healthcare workers battling Covid

When the Centre, in response to the direction, placed the onus on state governments, the apex court ordered it to take steps under the Disaster Management Act, 2005.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: July 31, 2020 3:37:51 pm
Covid-19, Coronavirus news, SC on health worker salaries, non-payment of doctors' salaries, SC on Covid-19 management, Indian Express A testing centre for Covid-19 in New Delhi (Express Photo: Gajendra Yadav)

The Supreme Court Friday directed the Centre to ensure the salaries of doctors and healthcare workers on the frontlines of the Covid-19 battle were paid on time. When the Centre, in response to the direction, placed the onus on state governments, the apex court ordered it to take steps under the Disaster Management Act, 2005.

Unhappy with the Centre’s stand, Justice M R Shah said: “You are not helpless. You have to see to it that your order is implemented. You have power under the DM Act. You can take steps also.”

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The Centre had argued that it issued directions to all states but four of them were yet to implement the same. According to news agency ANI, these four states were Punjab, Maharashtra, Tripura and Karnataka.

The top court also sought response from the Centre over the petitioner’s complaint that the period of quarantine for health workers was being treated as leave. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who appeared for the Centre, said it shouldn’t be so, and agreed to look into it.

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