On Wednesday, the Bombay High Court took suo motu (on its own) note of the fatalities at the state-run hospitals in Nanded and Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar and asked the Maharashtra government for further information.
On Thursday, a division bench comprising Chief Justice D K Upadhyaya and Justice Arif Doctor requested information on the state’s financial allocation for health from Attorney General Birendra Saraf, who was representing the state government.
Mohit Khanna, an attorney, had written the bench earlier in the day and asked for it to take suo motu notice of the fatalities.
Khanna was first told by the bench to submit a petition and that it wished to provide directions that would be effective. Additionally, the advocate was tasked with collecting information on the proportion (of money) that the government spends, the number of open beds in hospitals, the availability of medications, etc.
The court, however, said that it was taking suo motu notice of the matter during the afternoon session and noted that the hospital physicians’ claims of a lack of beds, personnel, and vital medications could not be accepted.
The HC said that it will take up the case on Thursday.
Khanna said in his letter that the Dr. Shankarrao Chavan Government Medical College and Hospital in Nanded had reported 31 fatalities in the 48 hours starting September 30. These deaths included newborn deaths.
The letter further noted that on October 2 and 3, at the Government Medical College and Hospital in Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar, 18 people, including newborns, passed away.