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COVID-19 relief curbs: Madras HC to give verdict tomorrow on DMK plea against state government

Senior Counsel P Wilson, arguing on behalf of DMK, said that starvation deaths have begun in the State and the government should be magnanimous to accept all contributions.

Published: 15th April 2020 12:25 PM  |   Last Updated: 15th April 2020 12:25 PM   |  A+A-

Madras HC

Madras High Court building. (File Photo | EPS)

By Express News Service

CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Wednesday directed the Tamil Nadu government to file its detailed counter on a plea made by DMK against the restrictions imposed by the state in the distribution of relief materials by volunteers and political parties to the people affected due to the COVID-19 lockdown. The court reserved its final orders for tomorrow. 

A special division bench of justices R Subbiah and Pongiappan on Wednesday heard the submissions made by Senior Counsel P Wilson, arguing on behalf of DMK. Wilson argued that the press release is inhumane. He said that starvation deaths have begun in the State and the government should be magnanimous to accept all contributions.

"The Prime Minister in his address and the Central Government have advised States to take the help of the private organisations to feed the poor. He said the DMK has 4000 volunteers in each constituency and have been feeding people for the past three weeks," Wilson observed. "The state cannot cater to the needs of all the 7.5 crore people during the time of distress and this is classic bureaucratic red tape", he submitted. 

Countering the submissions, advocate general Vijay Narayan for the state argued that the present pandemic is bigger than a natural calamity and also sought time to file his detailed counter in the case. 

According to the petition filed by DMK's RS Bharathi, there is no rationale behind the Government’s decision to prohibit the political parties and NGOs and sought an interim stay against the circular issued by the state on Sunday. 

Recording the submissions made, the special division bench ordered the State to file a counter to the submissions made by the DMK and reserved its orders for tomorrow.

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