By LE Desk

Ahmedabad, April 13: The Gujarat high court on Monday registered a public interest litigation following media reports of delay in RT-PCR testing and ‘shortage’ of Remdesivir, a key anti-viral drug used in Covid-19 treatment. A bench of Chief Justice Vikram Nath and Bhargav Karia said: “If common man applies for test, he gets a date after three days and report after seven days,” while ordering the state to expedite testing. 

“The very myth in January that Covid-19 was over has put us in difficulty,” the CJ said, adding that pandemics of 1919 and 1940 lasted three years.

“Every day there is a new mutant. Even after double doses, people are infected. One of your decorated IPS officers who had two doses passed away. Vaccination will help but it is not foolproof,” the CJ said and stressed on the importance of testing and enhancing capabilities, The Economic Times reported.

The bench sought to know why Remdesivir was available only for those hospitalised and not for home quarantined. “Doctors wouldn’t have advised Remdesivir for nothing. Controlling the injection for supply from one outsourcing centre is not in public interest.” 

Hospitals treating Covid patients should have Remdesivir stocks, the bench said.

“What we understand is that there is enough quantity of Remdesivir in Gujarat, but it is being controlled for reasons we don’t know,” the CJ said and added that the HC can find out why one agency controlled the drug and why it was not available to all hospitals, nursing homes and pharmaceuticals.

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