A Public Interest Litigation (PIL) has been filed before the Supreme Court seeking directions for release of all oxygen cylinders, medications, and vital equipment held in judicial custody by all police stations across the country. The plea sought their release after the completed requirements of the Code of Criminal Procedure were followed.
The petitioners have asked the court to order respondents to make arrangements for the release of confiscated properties that are necessary for the survival of the COVID patients. Further, general directions to all states were suggested for the release of these essentials.
While the entire country is in desperate need of these supplies, the petitioners Shrikant Prasad and Rajkishore Prasad, claim that the procedure under the CrPC for their release is arduous, as the police officer must appeal to a magistrate or higher court for release. Furthermore, because no one has time to apply for each and every case due to time constraints, these essentials end up with the malkhana of police stations, reported Live Law.
Right to Live under Article 21 has been quoted by the petitioners for the release of the seized medical vitals.
On May 8, the Jharkhand High Court issued an order allowing the use of oxygen cylinders in judicial custody for the treatment of COVID-19 patients. In April, the Delhi High Court too had directed the Delhi government to pass an order for the release of Remdesivir and oxygen concentrators for treatment as soon as the medicine was seized by police.