Supreme Court passes an interim order for free COVID-19 testing

The Honourable Supreme Court of India ("SC") on 08 April 2020 passed an interim order directing the Central Government to conduct the test relating to COVID-19 at free of cost, irrespective of whether the test is being conducted in the Government Laboratories or approved private laboratories. The SC also directed the Central Government to immediately issue necessary direction in this regard. 

The SC also mandated that the testing relating to COVID-19 should be conducted at laboratories accredited to National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories ("NABL") or by any agency which have been approved by World Health Organization ("WHO") or by Indian Council of Medical Research.

The writ petition under Article 32 of Indian Constitution was filed as Public Interest Litigation by lawyer Shashank Deo Sudhi ("Petitioner"). The SC has permitted two weeks time to Union of India ("Respondent") to file an affidavit in reply.

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