From clapping to lighting candles, the Centre is making efforts to keep people united at this critical juncture and appreciate those who are at the forefront of the nation’s fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
In the backdrop of this, the Supreme Court on Wednesday (April 8) said that healthcare workers, doctors, and nurses, taking the charge in battling the COVID-19 outbreak are the real warriors and have to be protected.
The top court’s statement comes in view of several petitions filed seeking direction to the Centre to ensure that all healthcare officials in the country are provided hazmat suits, masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE).
A hearing held by Justices Ashok Bhushan and S Ravindra Bhat via video conference urged the central government to take suggestions from the people and create a regulatory mechanism for those working in the medical profession.
Representing the Centre, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said the government is “doing the best on this front” and pushing their limits to arrange for the PPE kits and other essentials.
He added that the Centre agrees that the healthcare workers and their families should be protected and efforts such as housing them in hotels and ensuring their physical protection are being made.
Following the setting up of a central control room of Home and Health departments at a state level, the apex court also suggested the setting up of nodal centres at district levels for receiving more suggestions and complaints.
Mehta added that the central control rooms are getting calls with suggestions and complaints.
On the issue of salaries of the doctors involved in treating COVID-19 patients being slashed, the Solicitor General said, the claims were not true and if this is being done anywhere, the government will penalise such actions.
The government will write to the states and ask them to ensure that salaries of healthcare workers are not cut, he added.