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Delhi govt to consider declaring judicial officers as frontline workers, Delhi HC seeks report in 1 week

The bench of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Jasmeet Singh was hearing a petition filed by Advocate Shobha Gupta seeking a direction to establish dedicated Covid facility for judicial officers and declaring them frontline workers so as to get them vaccinated.

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The Delhi Government on Wednesday submitted before the Delhi High Court that the state government will consider declaring judicial officers as frontline workers, whereas, the Bench has directed the state to consider the same and file its report.

A divisional bench of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Jasmeet Singh noted, “You should take steps, you examine it, we don’t want to put it upon you…just like the armed forces, police officers, doctors, they are also going out, three of them already died.”

The Bench was hearing a petition filed by Advocate Shobha Gupta seeking a direction to establish dedicated Covid facility for judicial officers and declaring them frontline workers.

The plea sought direction, “To direct the GNCT of Delhi to immediately declare Ld. Judicial Officers (DJS/DHJS) as frontline workers and provide them by setting up a mechanism for the medical treatment of judicial officers in Delhi infected with the coronavirus and or serious related ailments.”

Senior Advocate Dayan Krishnan, who moved an intervention application in the petition, stated, “Nobody is asking for a VIP treatment, we know the efforts which this court has put up for the City.”

Seconding the opinion, Justice Sanghi said, “They are going to the offices they are working, going out, they have to be given assurance, confidence that they have a system in place if the need arises. Otherwise they will stop working, it is very easy.”

“Files in the district courts are not digitised, transportation of files is not advised, you say that they should not be recognised. The officers have several times written representation …but why not, they are also serving,” Justice Sanghi added.

Senior Advocate Rahul Mehra, appearing for the Delhi Government, submitted, “These have to be declared frontline workers, we should have special camps for frontline workers, if we sit on vaccinations god knows how many waves will come and go.”

Justice Sanghi further stated, “See, it is that in a bureaucracy or political leadership, they never accept the failure, it is not even in their mind, failure is another thing, they cannot even accept their inability.”

The bench has directed the Delhi Government to file a report while stating, “Mr. Mehra submitted that the representation will be considered by the chief secretary and a meeting will be held so that a solution may be brought in. He further submits that the state shall consider that the judicial officers who are serving at the district levels keep the wheels of justice running and hence they should be declared frontline workers.”

The bench listed the matter for further hearing on May 27 and directed the report be submitted ahead of the date.

Source ILNS

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