File fresh plea to make all mental hosp parties: SC to lawyer

By: |
New Delhi | August 22, 2016 6:50 PM

Supreme Court today asked a lawyer, who has filed a PIL for the release of about 300 persons from mental hospitals alleging they were still languishing despite being cured, to file a fresh plea to make all such hospitals in the country as parties to the ongoing suit.

"You file an impleadment application, then we will hear it (PIL)," a bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said. (PTI)“You file an impleadment application, then we will hear it (PIL),” a bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said. (PTI)

Supreme Court today asked a lawyer, who has filed a PIL for the release of about 300 persons from mental hospitals alleging they were still languishing despite being cured, to file a fresh plea to make all such hospitals in the country as parties to the ongoing suit.

“You file an impleadment application, then we will hear it (PIL),” a bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said.

The court had earlier issued notices to six states on the PIL, filed by lawyer Gaurav Kumar Bansal, seeking release of nearly 300 persons, who are still languishing in mental hospitals in Uttar Pradesh despite being cured of their ailments.

Today, the lawyer showed some “horrible photographs of mentally ill patients staying in a pathetic conditions in Behrampore Mental Hospital” and sought a direction that all mental hospitals be made parties to the ongoing petition.

The apex court had earlier sought responses from Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Kerala, Jammu and Kashmir and Meghalaya on the PIL seeking release of people, now fit for discharge from mental hospitals, and steps to ensure their social security post-discharge.

The PIL has alleged that many underprivileged persons were still languishing in mental hospitals despite being cured and that there was no policy in place to ensure their well- being after release.

The plea also referred to responses received under RTI with regard to the release of persons languishing in mental hospitals at Bareilly, Varanasi and Agra in Uttar Pradesh even after being cured.

The queries, which were posed under transparency law to Mental Health Hospital, Bareilly, Institute of Mental Health and Hospital, Agra and Mental Hospital, Varanasi, pertained to names, residential address and age of the patients who are now normal and waiting for discharge from hospitals.

Bansal had also sought information about the year in which the patients were declared fit for the discharge.

The plea has sought issuance of directions to states and others to “forthwith make arrangements to shift the patients, who are absolutely normal and are fit for discharge, from the mental hospitals to any other secure place like Old Age Homes etc.”

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