HC issues notice to Centre, Delhi govt over direction to permit operation of public transport in districts
The PIL, filed by Shreesh Chadha, has sought appropriate direction to the respondent to frame guidelines to ensure safety and hygiene of the passengers and public transport operators.
NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday issued a notice to the Centre and Delhi government on a petition seeking direction to permit the operation of public transport in all districts of the national capital.
The public interest litigation was filed by one Shreesh Chadha through advocate Prashant Vaxish, who has sought appropriate direction to the respondent to frame guidelines to ensure safety and hygiene of the passengers and public transport operators.
A Division Bench of Justices Rajiv Sahai Endlaw and Sangita Dhingra Sehgal has asked Centre, Delhi Government, Delhi Transport Corporation and DMRC to file reply on the plea and listed it for May 20.
The plea has also sought direction to set up thermal scanning units, and other necessary equipment to ensure that only passengers who are testing negative for COVID-19 and are utilising the service for commute for purposes of permitted activity are allowed to board.
The petitioner told the court that as per revised guidelines of lockdown, government provided relief to private establishments by allowing them to operate. Particularly, goverment allowed for a wider freedom to operate to government and private establishments, and also allowed private vehicles to ply subject to a limit of two persons in four-wheeler vehicles and one person per two wheeler vehicle.
The petition was moved observing that a large population of the nationa capital does not own private vehicles, and relies solely on the well-established and highly utilised public transport system and auto/cycle rickshaws to reach their places of work.
"On an average, lakhs of people make the journey from their home to their places of work and back, daily. Therefore, by allowing establishments and offices to operate, without the operation of public transport, the Government of India has failed to take this part of NCT Delhi's working population. This leaves a large portion of the working population without the means to reach their workplaces, when now they are explicitly required to by their owners/employers," the plea said.
The plea said that no buses, metro trains or rickshaws are available to the marginalised sections of the working population and the entire working population that relies on public transport systems to commute to their places of work.