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Centre Assures Delhi HC For Repatriation Of 56 Pregnant Nurses Stranded In UAE

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The Centre on Monday has given an undertaking to the Delhi High Court that they will be strictly following the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for Repatriation of Citizens stranded in foreign countries and priority will be given to pregnant women, on a plea filed seeking Repatriation of 56 Pregnant nurse stranded in the United Arab Emirates.

A single-judge bench of Justice Vibhu Bakhru of Delhi High Court while conducting hearing through video conferencing noted that the petitioner is here because the guidelines and the SOP are not being followed.

The petition has been filed by an association of nurses in the Delhi High Court urging the Centre to intervene and to facilitate the safe return of 56 Indian nurses who are stranded in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. The plea mentions that bringing back the nurses should take high priority as all of them are in serious distress and need immediate medical as well as psycho-socio support. 

Ms Acharya, learned ASG appearing for the Union of India submitted that the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs expressly stipulates that priority will be accorded to “compelling cases in distress, including migrant workers/labourers who have been laid off, short term visa holders faced with expiry of visas, persons with medical emergency/pregnant women/elderly, those required to return to India due to death of family member, and students.” She further states that this guideline would be strictly followed. The respondents are bound down to the aforesaid statement.

Advocate Mr. Subhash Chandra appearing for the United Nurses Association further raised the issue that 2 out of the 56 nurses have delivered the babies whereas, 2 of them are in critical condition.

Counsel for the central government submitted that appropriate assistance will be extended to the 4 nurses.

It is expected that the Government would take all necessary steps, within the limitation of the resources available, to operate lights to bring back Indian citizens who are stranded overseas.

“This Court also observes that it is necessary to ensure within the category of persons who are to be accorded priority, a higher priority be accorded to persons who are in medical distress vis-à-vis persons who are otherwise hale and hearty but are stranded due to the expiry of their visa or other reasons,” said the Delhi High Court.

After receiving the undertaking from the central government the Court disposed of the matter.

Read the order here;

64267_2020

-India Legal Bureau

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