COVID-19 | Kar HC | Release of information regarding people contracting COVID-19 at Nizamuddin religious ceremony a policy decision; Court declines to interfere

Karnataka High Court: A Division Bench of Abhay S. Oka, CJ and B.V. Nagarathna, J. while addressing a petition with regard to release of information of people who contracted COVID-19 at Nizamuddin, Delhi,  stated that,

It is a policy decision and Court cannot interfere in the same.

The present petition was filed seeking direction to respondent 2 to provide complete information to respondent 1 and National Executive Committee constituted under the provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 relating to foreign nationals as well as individuals of State of Karnataka who attended Nizamuddin gathering and disbursed from the said gathering.

State Government’s submission states that it has taken steps to trace the Foreign and Indian Nationals who attended the religious ceremony at Nizamuddin in Delhi and further steps to quarantine them have been taken.

With regard to furnishing the information of the Foreign and Indian Nationals who attended the religious ceremony at Nizamuddin in Delhi, Centre and State have been periodically releasing the number of person who have been found to be positive and negative along with the number of cases that have been recovered.

Further, the Bench stated that,

“State Government or Central Government will have to take a decision on the question whether specific information as regards particular persons who have allegedly contacted corona virus at a particular place should be made public or not. It is a matter of policy.”

In view of the above, petition is disposed of. [Girish Bharadwaj v. State of Karnataka, 2020 SCC OnLine Kar 445 , decided on 21-04-2020]

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