Covid-19, known by its layman’s name as Coronavirus. WHO declared it to be a pandemic. This view traced its origin from the Wuhan city of China. Presently the disease has spread its legs across the whole world and for India the almanacs are not very good with 1190 patients coupled with eternal rest of 20 people (records of Ministry of Health Government of India as on 31/03/2020).
The pandemic creates encumbrance in the path of legislators the government and public health professionals with complex changes.
CONSTITUTIONAL DUTY OF THE STATE IN THE ARENA OF THE HEALTH OF ITS CITIZENS:
Proceeding towards the Constitutional sentient regarding ‘health’. Article 38 of the Indian Constitution lays down-“the responsibility of the State to secure social order for the promotion of the welfare of the public health. Article 39(e) pertains to the protection of the health of the workers. Article 47 imposes primary duty of the State improvement of public health in securing justice, providing humane conditions of work for the workers, extension of benefits pertaining to sickness disability, old age and maturity benefits. Article 48-A states that the duty of the State towards providing a good and healthy pollution free environment.
GOVERNMENT’S STEP IN THE LIGHT OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL PROVISIONS :
Reckon with the above Constitutional provisions the Government of India on 29/03/2020 announce and asked the State Governments to ensure no movement across the cities, also the government had asked that actions should be taken against those asking rent from workers and migrants.
Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India concluded-“Landlords cannot ask for rent for lockdown period for workers, migrants and students living in rent accommodation and also there would be no movement for workers and migrants across the cities.”
On 28 March, 2020 a report published in Noida Times stated that on 27 March, more than 500 workers along with their families have started travelling and thereby leaving Delhi despite the promised accommodation and other facilities by the Government of Delhi. Keeping in view of the above condition the Government issued the orders regarding non- receiving of rents from workers and migrants.
It is most humbly submitted that in the case of pandemic which is still treated as “muddle without blend” the only solution exists is self-quaranting there is a presumptive, enforceable right to work from home. Now a situation arises that effective enforcement of Article 23 will nullify the employer’s right to freedom of trade under Article19 (1) (g) as stated by various Constitutional virtuosos. The Supreme Court in recent RTI judgment case upheld ‘doctrine of proportionality’ which means that two rights should be harmonized so that there is least possible infringement of both.
OPEN INFRINGEMENT OF GOVERNMENT’S ORDERS:
“Healing doesn’t mean the damage never existed. It means damage no longer control our lives.” Despite the efforts of the Government to maintain social distancing, people (both educated as well as uneducated) are openly flouting the orders, they are obeying the strategy of social distancing which was helpful in coping with the disease in its epicenter i.e. city of Wuhan, China. Beside this infringement, there are many ones who are fighting the disease and thereby creating an environment of moratorium for its spread. A researcher from University of Hyderabad has already developed a “vaccine candidate, crossing the first hurdle in developing a new vaccine that could help prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Dr. Seema Mishra of Department of Biochemistry, School of Life Sciences, University of Hyderabad, designed the potential vaccine candidates, which will help in development of actual vaccine. She identified the vaccine candidates as ‘T cell epitopes’.
Even the Courts are directing and imparting importance to the therapy of social distancing. As stated by the Punjab and Haryana High Court in the case of Adityajit Singh Chadha vs. Union of India, it was held that-“Maintaining social distance is a sine qua non to control the disease. Administration should lay down the parameters of social distancing at the time of distribution of essential items and also to monitor and regulate the same by taking stringent actions against the violators.
“Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage. The human spirit is to go strong by conflict.” These lines laid emphasis on the staunchest amplitude of humans to overcome with any setbacks, but it does not mean that we should enhance anything with idiocy. Central as well as State Governments are doing their best to cope with this pandemic, the need is that people should
adapt the therapy of social distancing and lay an paradigm for the whole world as well as for our upcoming generations that we can muddle through any situation, the need is to stay unite.