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Web Desk

The Supreme Court on June 12 pulled up the Delhi Government for treating Coronavirus patients “worse than animals”. The court slammed the “horrendous, horrific and pathetic” situation in the national capital amid spurt of virus cases. Apart from Delhi, the situation is ‘grim’ in Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, the court said, seeking response from the four states and the central government.

“COVID-19 patients are treated worse than animals. In one case, a body was found in the garbage. Patients are dying and nobody is there to even attend to them,” the court said as it asked the Arvind Kejriwal government to explain the fall in testing in the city.

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“Why has your testing gone down from 7,000 to 5,000 a day when Chennai and Mumbai have increased their testing from 16,000 to 17,000?” the court asked as it took suo motu cognizance of reports of improper handling of COVID-19 patients and disposal of bodies in the country.

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Requests for coronavirus tests cannot be denied, the court said, adding that the “procedure can be simplified so that more and more tests are done”.

Delhi has the third highest number of coronavirus cases in the country after Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu. The national capital has logged 34,687 patients so far and 1,085 deaths, according to the Union Health Ministry. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has repeatedly said that the city is prepared to tackle the pandemic amid spurt in the number of infections.

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Criticising the AAP government for not following the Union Health Ministry’s guidelines, the top court said: “The situation in Delhi is horrendous, horrific and pathetic. (There is a) very sorry state of affairs in its hospitals that aren’t giving due care and concern to the bodies. Patients’ families aren’t even informed about deaths. Families haven’t been able to attend the last rites too in some cases.”