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Supreme Court disposes of Karnataka plea, Kerala patients can come in with papers

Solicitor general says talks between two states’ chief secys led to amicable resolution.

ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Apr 08, 2020, 10.55 AM IST
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Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan welcomed the development.
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BENGALURU: The Supreme Court on Tuesday disposed of Karnataka’s petition challenging the Kerala High Court order on opening the national highway traffic at Kasargod border to provide hospital access in Mangaluru to Kerala patients.

An apex court bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde disposed of the case after solicitor general Tushar Mehta said talks between the chief secretaries of the two states facilitated by the Centre had led to an amicable resolution of the issue.

Karnataka had blocked entry of all traffic, including patients from Kasargod, to Mangaluru after the border district of Kerala reported a steep increase in Covid-19 cases. As of Monday, Kasargod alone had accounted for 152 positive cases, raising concerns in the bordering district in Karnataka.

According to the agreement reached between the two states, Karnataka will allow non-Covid patients to access healthcare in Mangaluru after vetting their papers at the Talapaddy border checkpost. Such patients have to carry medical certificates as well as papers to show which hospital they want to visit. A medical team at the checkpost will check the papers before allowing entry. Karnataka has said it will allow only one attendant with each patient.

Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan welcomed the development. He had said on Monday that the state’s doors were always open to patients from the neighbouring states to take treatment there. At present, 29 patients from Karnataka and 44 patients from Tamil Nadu are undergoing treatment in hospitals in Wayanad, he said.
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