The Supreme Court issued an interim stay on the Allahabad High Court's order ordering a lockdown in five districts of Uttar Pradesh due to the COVID-19 crisis on Tuesday (20 April 2021). In the appeal filed by the Uttar Pradesh government, the bench of Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, Justices AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian gave notice, which is due back in two weeks. The court, however, made it clear that the UP government has to report back to the High Court on the steps taken by it to deal with the pandemic situation, Bar & Bench reported.
The Uttar Pradesh government had declined to comply with the Allahabad court's lockdown order. "Corona cases have increased in the state, and strictness is required for corona control," said a spokesperson for the Adityanath administration. "Along with saving lives, the poor's livelihood must also be preserved. As a result, the cities will not be completely shut down."
In the wake of an increase in Covid-19 cases and a shortage of facilities to meet the needs, the Allahabad High Court had placed a lockdown in Prayagraj, Lucknow, Varanasi, Kanpur, and Gorakhpur on April 19. The order was passed by a bench of Justices Siddhartha Varma and Ajit Kumar. The court acknowledged that a lockdown was a state-level decision, but because the UP government lacked a clear strategy, the court agreed to intervene.
"Those in the helm of affairs of governance are to be blamed for the present chaotic health problems, particularly when there is a democracy, which means a government of the people, by the people, and for the people," the court said, criticising the Yogi Government's handling of Covid-19 infections.
The Court had restricted the movements of people and cancelled all social and religious congregrations and closed down educational institutions, malls and restaurants among other institutions until April 26. All the essential services like medical services and grocery are allowed to remain open. As of Tuesday, 2:00 P.M , Uttar Pradesh has 208523 active cases and 9997 deaths.