Allahabad HC: No Person Should be Seen Outside Without Mask; Various Directions issued for COVID-19

A Division Bench of Allahabad High Court comprising Hon’ble Mr. Justice Siddharth Verma and Hon’ble Mr. Justice Ajit Kumar has issued a Mandamus for the whole of the State of Uttar Pradesh that no person should be seen outside his/ her house without a mask on his/her face and he or she should check that the mask covers both the nose and the mouth.

The Allahabad High Court is monitoring the actions of State Government to curb the spread of COVID-19 in Uttar Pradesh.

Earlier the High Court has also issued Several Directions from time time, which can be Read by clicking HERE.

On 23.09.2020, when the matter was taken up, the Allahabad High Court heard the case on the following five issues:-

  1. Encroachment of public land and the menace of parking;
  2. Discharge of function by the Town Vending Committee;
  3. Disposal of used masks;
  4. Public wearing of masks; and
  5. Further medical facility during COVID-19.

Issue No.I: 

With respect to Issue No. 1, the Allahabad High Court clarified that no illegal parking of vehicles can be permitted in Civil Lines area where a parking place has already been assigned and a huge building for the same has been constructed. People may utilize the services of electric rickshaw etc. to reach the places of shops but the vehicle should be parked in the parking zone only. 

For above, the Court directed Nagar Nigam and Vyapar Mandal to discuss this issue sitting across the table and if Vyapar Mandal has still any problem with the direction that Court has issued for clearing public road from unauthorized parked vehicles, they should move proper applications before the Court for the ventilation of their grievance. However, the Court directed that the parking issue be resolved within two weeks.

Issue No.II: 

The Division Bench ordered that the Town Vending Committee shall swing into action immediately and the exercise of approval of pending zones be completed within a week from today and allotment exercise shall further be carried out within three days thereafter and side by side exercise to further identify vending zones shall also be carried out and be completed within the next 15 days. 

Further a comprehensive report regarding approval of the allotment shall be submitted on or before 1st October, 2020 and exercise for identifying new vending zones and its approval shall be further carried out in next 15 days and report regarding that shall also be submitted by 17th October, 2020.

Issue No.-III: 

The Allahabad High Court also directed that Nagar Nigam shall inform all the commercial shop keepers of different commercial places to place disposal bins for collecting used masks and Nagar Nigam shall collect the same on a day to day basis. It has further been directed that if shop keepers violate the directions issued hereinabove, they shall be given notice by the Nagar Nigam and shall appropriately be penalized for the same.

Issue No.- IV : 

The Court considered a report titled The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) which was published on 08.09.2020, which states that as per latest research wearing of masks does not only prevent the person who is wearing the mask from getting the infection but it says that if everyone wears a mask, it shall also lessen the force of the virus for the whole world, resulting in the elimination of the virus. 

Court Found that from the article, it appears that this is the last opportunity now available to rescue civilization from the effect of this pandemic. It also mentions that today there is no proof of the fact that what would be the after-effects of the vaccine. This much the researchers, however, are sure that if 100% masking is done by us then the virus by itself would die a natural death.

Therefore the Court was convinced with the study shown in the journal leading to the conclusion that the “100% population masking” is the only strategy by which we can attempt on containing the spread of pandemic COVID-19 totally.

Further, the Court observed that there is no possibility of any vaccination getting into action in the State very soon as the researches are still underway at different stages by different research institutes and scientists.

Under aforesaid circumstances, the Allahabad High Court issued a writ of mandamus for the whole of the State of Uttar Pradesh that no person should be seen outside his/ her house without a mask on his/her face and he or she should check that the mask covers both the nose and the mouth. 

Further, the police in all the districts of the State of Uttar Pradesh should in all police stations of all the districts deploy Task Forces to implement this mandamus. Each task force should consist of many more police personnel than presently have been deployed. Needless to say, that violation of this mandamus would entail rigorous punishments. 

Hon’ble Judges also directed that the Police and the Administration cannot get away by saying that people are to be blamed for not wearing the masks. They cannot say that despite their best efforts, masks are not being worn. The people and the Administration should realize that today wearing of masks is not only for the protection of the person who is wearing it but it is now also important for protecting the whole society, and if a person commits a crime against society, he has to be punished. It was further directed that the police of the entire State of Uttar Pradesh has to necessarily take appropriate action under relevant provisions of the various Penal laws, the moment it finds a person without a mask in public.

The Advocate Commissioners appointed by the Court shall report to the Zonal officers and the Municipal Commissioners through the email Id which have been provided to them in the Court itself by Sri Kautilya, counsel appearing for the Municipal Corporation. They shall also mail their report regarding the exercise of the task forces on a daily basis to the Registrar, Legal Cell, High Court Allahabad on his email Id and shall also forward the same to the Additional Advocate General.

Issue No.- V: 

On this issue, the Court directed the administration to ensure that every information which is provided, should be entered against the name of the person in respect of whom the enquiry was being made and the portal should genuinely be updated on a day to day basis. A further problem which has come to the notice of the Court is that if a person who is in home isolation requires C.T. scan and X-ray, then no pathology entertains that patient. Every district in the State of U.P. should have a dedicated clinic (it can be in the clinics of the municipality of every district) where a person who is in home quarantine can go and get his/her C.T. scan or X-ray done.

The Court has directed to list the matter again on 28th September 2020 at 10:00 A.M.

It has also been directed to place the copy of the order before the Additional Chief Secretary (Home), State of Uttar Pradesh, Director General of Police, Uttar Pradesh, Lucknow and all the District Magistrates, SSP and S.P. of all the districts of the State within 48 hours for necessary action and compliance of this order at their end.

Case Details:-

Title:- In-Re Inhuman Condition At Quarantine Centres And For

Providing Better Treatment To Corona Positive vs State of U.P

Case No. PIL No. 574 of 2020

Date Of Order: 23.09.2020

Quorum:- Hon’ble Mr. Justice Siddharth Verma and Hon’ble Mr. Justice Ajit Kumar


Counsel for the Petitioner – Gaurav Kumar Gaur,Aditya Singh, Parihar, Amitanshu Gour, Jitendra Kumar, Katyayini, Rahul Sahai,Rishu, Mishra, S.P.S. Chauhan, Satyaveer Singh, Shailendra Garg,

For Respondent:C.S.C.,Dhiraj Singh,Hari Nath Tripathi,Purnendu Kumar Singh,Satyavrat Sahai,Sunil Dutt Kautilya

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