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Decisions by the Judiciary for COVID-19

We live in a democratic and law-abiding country, where we are given full rights and remedies for all the issues and violations of laws or rights. This blog is to provide everyone with a summary of the current legal situation and current legal decisions taken by the Supreme court and High courts. Summary of all the bills passed and new laws made are given in this blog. The impact of coronavirus or COVID-19 on domestic and international businesses is severe, across countries and all sectors. To assist India Inc., we have prepared this note to highlight some of the COVID-19 outbreak-related key legal issues that companies should be thinking about in the current environment.  Our economy has gone down to zero because of this early pandemic. The Supreme court and High Court have passed many judgments that are favorable to the people of the country. Many situations between law and COVID-19 are going on.’

Just like the Supreme Court, many High courts in India have said they will only take up urgent matters for hearing.

1. Legal action would be initiated against those who have returned from abroad and who are traveling for work and are flouting the 14-day quarantine period advised to them to control the spread of coronavirus, said a Group of Ministers which on Wednesday reviewed the actions for the management of the contagion.

2. On 7 May 2020, the UP government passed the ordinance to suspend Labor laws in the state for three years. The ordinance is being passed for the industrial growth, investment, and also for the migrants who have returned back home.

On 11 May 2020, NEW 117 mandis were INTEGRATED with E-NAM which led to an increase in the number of mandis to 962 all over the country.

The program was launched to secure the health of the respiratory system of the people of Bangalore. This aims to help people increase the oxygen level of the people by themselves.

3. The central government has to pass an ordinance that will increase working hours for employees to help with the issue of shortage of workers and laborers along with maintaining social distancing.

4. The government of India has traced 1,023 cases of COVID amongst Tablighi Jamaat congregations. Due to their uncontrollable violence and misbehaviors, the National security act has been invoked for them by the UP Government.

On 23 April 2020, this was decided by the Supreme court that the quantity of the banned drug mixture will decide the punishment of the offender.

5. April 2, 2020, the ordinance was passed to save the attacks on doctors and health care workers and declared the punishment of 6 months to 7 years of imprisonment. In non-serious cases, the workers are liable to pay a penalty of Rs. 50,000 and in serious cases, more than 2 Lakhs.

6. Spitting an offense: Section 51 of the Disaster Management Act:

The Ministry of Home Affairs had extended the lockdown. According to new guidelines spitting has been made an offense under the Disaster Management Act. Many states have not taken action on spitting in the public.

7. The Indian judiciary has come under immense pressure to innovate during this pandemic so as to balance public health concerns with access to justice. Perhaps, with an aim to strike this balance, the Supreme Court recently issued a notification stating that only urgent matters will be heard, with the number of benches decided as per need.

8. On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the novel coronavirus disease as a pandemic. On the same day, the Government of India imposed visa and other travel restrictions. Soon thereafter, many states in India declared a ‘lockdown’, an emergency measure. [under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 and the Disaster Management Act, 2005]

These are some current happenings and legal decisions taken by the Supreme Court and the government. I hope it helped you to get updated with the current issues surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic. Stay safe at home and enjoy your quarantine.


Apoorva Sharma is a law student in 8th semester, who is currently pursuing Law from Subodh Law College, Rajasthan University, Jaipur.

Edited by Rudra Prasad

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