directed the Tamil Nadu government to submit a status report
on the steps taken to bring back stranded people from the
state, who had attended a religious conference in Delhi in
A division bench of Justices Vineet Kothari and Pushpa
Sathyanarayana directed the government to file the status
report on a petition by Asa Umar Farooq and posted the matter
for further hearing to May 12.
Claiming that the central government had alerted its
citizens on the COVID-19 pandemiconly on March 14, the
petitioner said there was no ban ordered against any
gatherings, religious events or public meetings till then.
He further submitted that the Prime Minister had asked
the public to observe ''Janta curfew'' for a day on March 22.
Till then, no medical emergency was announced in the
country by the health department.
It was only when the Centre realised the gravity of the
situation arising out of the disease that it was declared as a
national disaster and sec.144 was promulgated in the state,
asking people to maintain social distancing.
Both the governments, announced enforcement of the
lockdown, without facilitating any transit for those who had
been stuck in far off places and no alternative facilities
were made available for them, the petitioner alleged.
Referring to those who had gone to New Delhi to attend
the Tabhlighi Jamaat conference, he said over 1,500 people
were stranded in the national capital in the wake of
coronavirus-induced lockdown, of which around 600 were from
the Tamil Nadu.
Apart from this, many others were stuck in other states.
Alleging that the state government has failed in its duty
to bring back its natives from other states, the petitioner
sought a direction from the court to bring them back.
When the matter came up before the bench through video
conference, Government Pleader Jayaprakash Narayan submitted
that all such applications from people stranded in different
parts of the country, were being processed by a team. PTI COR