New Delhi: Holding the Election Commission responsible for the deadly second wave of coronavirus, the Madras High Court on Monday observed that the poll panel should be booked for murder. “You (EC) are the only institution responsible for the situation we are in today and You have been singularly lacking any kind of exercise of authority. You have not taken measures against political parties holding rallies despite the court saying maintain Covid protocol”, a bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy observed while hearing a plea moved by state Transport Minister MR Vijayabhaskhar said.Also Read - Madhya Pradesh Records 42 COVID-19 Cases, Active Count Stands At 298
When the counsel for the EC told the judges that all necessary steps were underway, the bench retorted that by allowing the political parties to take out rallies and meetings, the poll panel had paved the way for the resurgence of the second wave of Covid-19. Also Read - Maharashtra Will Impose Another Lockdown If...: Guardian Minister Drops Big Hint Amid Rising Covid Cases
The bench also sought a blueprint to enforce Covid norms on May 2 – the day of the assembly election results – by Friday. Also Read - Breaking News Highlights: Union Minister Anurag Thakur Launches Takshashila Sports City in Pune
“We assure you that we will stop counting if we do not find before May 2 a blueprint on how proper maintenance of Covid protocol is assured so that this state does not succumb to the idiosyncrasies any further”, the court warned.
“Public health is paramount. Distressing that constitutional authorities ought to be reminded,” the court stated.
In his petition, the Tamil Nadu state transport minister had sought a direction to the Election Commission, to follow a slew of measures in ensuring fairness during the counting of votes on May 2 for Karur constituency where he had contested the elections as an AIADMK candidate.
“Since as many as 77 candidates are contesting in the Karur constituency, it would be very difficult to accommodate their agents in the counting hall. It may affect observance of the protocols”, the petitioner alleged.
(With agency inputs)