Supreme Court orders audit of Oxygen supplies provided to States; clarifies no intention to scrutinize doctors' good faith decisions
The Supreme Court has ordered the 12-member National Task Force constituted by it to form sub-committees for each State to conduct audit for determining whether the Oxygen supplies allocated by the Union Government reach the concerned State/UT.
The Bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and MR Shah, however, clarified that the purpose of conducting audits is not to scrutinise the decisions made in good faith by doctors while treating their patients.
Instead, it is to ensure a measure of accountability for the proper distribution of oxygen supplies made available by the Union Government to the States/UTs.
The Court said, "The purpose is to ensure that the supplies which have been allocated are reaching their destination; that they are being made available through the distribution network to the hospitals or, as the case may be, the end users efficiently and on a transparent basis; and to identify bottlenecks or issues in regard to the utilization of oxygen. The purpose of the audit is not to scrutinise the decisions made in good faith by doctors while treating their patients."