KATHMANDU:The Supreme Court has rejected the government’s petition seeking review of the earlier verdict of the apex court requiring the government to provide free PCR tests and treatment to COVID-19 patients.
Earlier on Sunday, Laxman Aryal, Secretary at the Ministry of Health and Population, filed a petition at the Supreme Court via the Office of the Attorney General for a judicial review of last month’s verdict for the government to conduct PCR tests and provide treatment to Covid-19 patients free of cost.
However, a full bench comprising judges Hari Krishna Karki, Sapana Pradhan Malla and Purushottam Bhandari today rescinded the government’s petition, upholding the Court’s earlier verdict of ordering the government to provide PCR tests and treatment against Covid-19 free of cost.
In its writ petition seeking a judicial review of the earlier verdict, the government had claimed that the decision to charge money for PCR tests was based on the country’s economic situation and assessment of its capacity to bear the costs.
The ministry had also stated that the verdict contradicts the court’s previous orders, legal and constitutional provisions of the country. It had also said that it is providing free services to the poor and those people who cannot afford the tests and treatment.
However, with the court’s decision to quash the judicial review petition, the government will be legally obliged to provide PCR tests and treatment of Covid-19 free of cost.