New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday criticized the relaxation of restrictions granted by the Kerala government for the Bakrid festival in areas with the highest COVID-19 positivity rates and warned that it may take action if the relaxation leads to further spread of the virus. The state government gave in to traders’ pressure by granting relaxations ahead of Bakrid, said the apex court, revealing a ‘sorry state of affairs’.
In their judgment, a bench of appeals court judges R F Nariman and B R Gavai said the Kerala government had exposed the people of India to the pandemic by allowing these relaxations. According to the bench, ‘the Kerala government must give heed to Article 21 of the Constitution, which guarantees the right to life’.
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The bench was hearing an application regarding relaxations granted by the Kerala government due to the Bakrid festival. The appeal was filed in a matter in which the apex court had taken suo motu notice of earlier media reports about the Uttar Pradesh government’s decision to allow the Kanwar Yatra amid the pandemic last week.