Supreme Court: The bench of L. Nageswara Rao and Deepak Gupta, JJ has directed the Central Government to ensure fair and equitable distribution of surgical /n95 masks and also the sale and distribution of hand sanitizers and liquid soap and to make such items available to the public at large at reasonable prices.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta had submitted before the Court that surgical/n95 masks have been declared as essential goods and that steps have been taken by the Government of India to issue directions regarding the availability and distribution of surgical/n95 masks as well as hand sanitizers and liquid soaps at their minimum retail prices fixed by the Government.
He further submitted that there is a helpline provided at the control rooms which are working round the clock responding to complaints by persons who are not able to secure surgical/n95 masks and the hand sanitizers and liquid soaps at the prices fixed by the Government of India.
Asking the government to ensure the compliance of the steps and prompt addressing of the complaints made though the helpline number, the bench disposed of the matter.
[Justice for Rights Foundation v. Union of India, 2020 SCC OnLine SC 353, decided on 03.04.2020]