The Allahabad High Court had directed the UP government to impose strict restrictions till April 26 in five cities.
The Supreme Court of India has stayed the Allahabad High Court order imposing lockdown in five cities of Uttar Pradesh in view of the rising number of COVID-19 cases. The court asked the Uttar Pradesh government to immediately inform the High Court of steps taken by it to contain COVID-19. The apex court also noted that lockdown in the five cities by judicial orders may not be the correct approach. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for the Uttar Pradesh government submitted that the government has done a lot and many things have to be done. SG Mehta also submitted that the blanket lockdown imposed by the court in 5 cities in terms of impugned order would create immense administrative difficulty.
The Allahabad High Court had directed the UP government to impose strict restrictions till April 26 in five cities amid a surge in COVID-19 cases. Mehta has contended that a virtual lockdown is declared by judicial order for a week.
The high court had directed the Uttar Pradesh government to impose strict restrictions including the closing of malls, shopping complexes and restaurants till April 26 in five cities, but stopped short of calling it a “complete lockdown”. Allahabad, Lucknow, Varanasi, Kanpur, Nagar and Gorakhpur are the cities in which the high court has directed curbs.
The high court had also slammed the Uttar Pradesh government for not planning for a second wave of the pandemic. It also criticised the State Election Commission for holding the panchayat elections amid the COVID-19 outbreak. The court had also directed the government to consider the imposition of a complete lockdown in the entire state for at least two weeks.
Reacting to the Allahabad HC order, the UP government said there would be no complete lockdown in the cities for now.