Written By- Pretika Tiwari
On Monday, the division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad stated that the Directorate General of Civil Aviation should review its guidelines, from time to time, regarding wearing face masks on flights and also to adhere to the guidelines issued by the Government. The bench also observed that the Court’s duty is not to give directions relating to the Covid-19 norms as it is under the ambit of the Central Government. The Court also said that the pandemic situation in the country is under control. “We are not experts on the subject. The Government of India and ICMR is… The DGCA will look into this and pass appropriate orders,” the Court said.
The HC was hearing a case of suo motu petition filed by Justice C Hari Shankar, who stated that the passengers were not following the Covid-19 protocols. Earlier, the DGCA’s counsel had told the Court that numerous misbehaving and troublesome passengers who weren’t wearing masks on flights and following the guidelines had been dealt with. A Bench led by the former Acting Chief Justice Vipin Sanghi requested the DGCA to publish binding guidelines for the enforceability of mask mandates and COVID-19 protocol at airports and on flights when an appeal was heard last month.
The Court also decided on an application submitted by the Bridging the Gap Foundation, an NGO, via Advocate Somnath Bharti today wherein it was requested that the DGCA advise the Court of any requirements that should be placed on airlines in order to combat COVID-19.