New Delhi: Amid a sudden spurt in coronavirus cases, the Supreme Court on Friday asked the Centre to take strict measures until a vaccine is developed. The top court asserted that the ongoing COVID-19 wave appears to be harsher than before and ten states are currently contributing 77 per cent of the total positive cases. Stating that ‘guidelines without strict implementations are not enough’, the SC directed the Narendra Modi-led government to take the lead and bring the situation under control.Also Read - Amid Controversy Over Gyanvapi And Taj Mahal, Petition Filed in Supreme Court to Conduct 'Confidential' Survey of Ancient Mosques

A bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, R S Reddy and M R Shah, while taking note of the surge in COVID19 cases in the country, said that states have to rise to the occasion and be above politics to deal with the pandemic. “It is high time that strict measures are taken to implement the policy, guidelines and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to contain the surge of coronavirus cases nationwide”, the bench said. Also Read - 'Recovery Is Underway In Spite Of Headwinds', RBI Says In Annual Report 2021-22

“Eighty per cent of the people are not wearing masks, the rest of them have it hanging from their jaws. Things are going from bad to worse. Tightening of implementation is required by Centre and states. The central government must also see all states are following the SOPs,”  the SC was as saying by a leading portal. Also Read - 'Intrigued', Says Justice Chandrachud By Articles Written On GST Council Judgement

Meanwhile, the Central government in an affidavit submitted before the top court blamed the Delhi government for the worsening of COVID-19 situations in the national capital. It said that the Delhi government was lax in containing COVID-19 and added that the failure in enforcing measures by it led to the spread of infection. No effective preventive steps were taken to contain the infection, Centre said in the affidavit.

It said that despite knowing that festivities and winter might lead to a surge in COVID-19 cases, the Delhi government didn’t do enough. Those in-home isolation were not properly traced and private hospitals also flouted discharge policy, it added.

“It is also extremely crucial to note here that in a survey of the 114 private hospitals in Delhi, which was carried out by the Ministry of Home Affairs from November 17 to November 18 it was found that the observance of discharge policy and prescribed Clinical Management Protocol was very lax, thus leading to a large number of patients not being given the proper treatment,” the affidavit said adding that the Delhi government has now been asked to strictly comply with the prescribed protocols in this regard.

It said that the fatality rate in India remains low at 1.46 per cent, when compared to a global average of 2.36 per cent and added that India stands at a total death count of 0.13 million. The government will continue making effort to bring our CFR down to less than 1 per cent, and accelerate our efforts in reducing the positivity rate, which stands at 6.9 per cent, it said.

(With agency inputs)