In an order passed on Friday, 10-04-2015, the Supreme Court of India passed an order that says, among other things:
“The Supreme Court on Friday directed private hospitals to provide free treatment, including specialized surgeries, to acid attack victims and asked government authorities to take action against them if they fail to comply with its order.
After laying down a stringent regulatory mechanism for sale of acid to curb acid attacks on women, the court asked private hospitals to bear the entire cost of medical treatment of acid attack survivors, including costly plastic and corrective surgeries.
A social justice bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and U U Lalit said hospitals must also provide free medicine, food and other facilities to such victims.” (from the linked report in the Times of India.)
Now, under which provisions of Constitution, or under which law, the Supreme Court is empowered to issue this order? How can the SC order private hospitals to incur expenditure on individuals? The private hospitals have no money of their own. If they are treating someone free, they have to spread the cost on other patients without their consent. Therefore, in effect the Supreme Court is forcing collectivisation of incomes, the pet Leftist project.
And why private hospitals? Day in and day out private enterprises are cursed, maligned for their ‘profit’ motive, but as in case of Corporate Social Responsibility, it is tacitly accepted that only they can deliver.
And even in case of government hospitals; the portion of actual cost that is to be directly recovered from the patients treated there, is a matter of policy to be decided by the government, not by the Courts.
Acid attack is one of the most heinous of crimes. All efforts must be made to impose deterrent punishment, and the sale of acid must be strictly regulated. But to use this traumatic crime to advance collectivisation, without any Constitutional or Legal authority, is not proper. The order must be challenged by the affected hospitals.
The name of the bench itself is curious. It is called social justice bench. Social justice is a fraudulent construct of the Left. It is another, devious, means to advance collectivisation.
Justice is justice. There is nothing called social justice. The Supreme Court has to decide the cases based on Constitution of India and laws passed by the parliament. It must pay no heed to newer definitions of justice that come out regularly from JNU and other Leftist think tanks and the Left controlled media.