SC tells Centre to clarify stand on movement restrictions in NCR

New Delhi: A police constable stops commuters to cross Delhi-Ghaziabad border after it was sealed by the authorities due to a sudden surge in coronavirus cases in the national capital, during the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown, in New Delhi.
The Supreme Court Tuesday asked the Centre to clarify its stand on a plea which has raised the issue of alleged restriction on movement for permissible activities in the national capital region (NCR) owing to sealing of borders due to Covid-19 pandemic.

A bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan, hearing the matter through video-conferencing, said it needed to know the Centre's stand on the issue and asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta to take instructions from the government. The bench, also comprising Justices S K Kaul and M R Shah, said the counsel appearing for the petitioner may serve a copy of the plea to the SG who may obtain instructions on behalf of the Centre as well as the Delhi government and file their responses.

The apex court was informed by the advocates representing Haryana and Uttar Pradesh that they have already filed their responses on the plea. "Let the affidavit filed by the state of Haryana and state of Uttar Pradesh be brought on the record," the bench said in its order. The apex court has posted the matter for hearing after a week.

During the brief arguments, the counsel appearing for Uttar Pradesh referred to the number of Covid-19 cases in Delhi and Noida and said that the authorities are cautious.

On May 15, the apex court had sought responses from the Centre and governments of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Delhi on the plea which has alleged that “complete sealing of borders" within the NCR and restrictions imposed on movement of citizens was in violation of the new guidelines of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).

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