New Delhi, July 23: The Supreme Court’s directive to the Centre to frame guidelines and declare compensation to the victims of COVID-19 is under consultation with all stakeholders, Union Minister of State for Health Bharati Pravin Pawar informed the Lok Sabha on Friday.
Keeping in view the spread of COVID-19 in the country and declaration of the disease as a pandemic by the World Health Organization, the central government treated it as a notified disaster for providing assistance under the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) for various containment measures, Pawar said.
She was responding to a question on whether the government has noted the apex court’s directions to frame a guideline and declare compensation to the victims of COVID-19.
In her written reply, Pawar said the Supreme Court judgment had directed the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) to recommend guidelines for ex-gratia assistance on account of loss of life to the family members of persons who had died due to COVID-19, over and above the guidelines already recommended for the minimum standards of relief to be provided to persons affected by COVID-19.
“Pursuant to the said judgement, the matter is under consultation with all the stakeholders,” she said.
Responding to another question on whether the government has noticed that the deaths due to COVID-19 were not registered properly/under-reported/concealed to bring down the death rate, Pawar said 418,987 deaths due to coronavirus infection have been reported since January 2020 till July 22 across states and Union Territories.
The Health Ministry has conveyed WHO and ICMR guidelines on correct recording of COVID-19 related deaths in accordance with globally accepted ICD-10 classification to states and UTs.
In addition, the issue of correct and timely reporting of deaths has also been stressed to all states and UTs through video conferences and formal communication.
“Accordingly, the details are obtained from states and UTs. It has been noted that some of states based on reconciliation of mortality data have also revised the reported COVID-19 deaths. All states have also been advised that while reconciling the data, the details of deaths shall be indicated date wise and district wise to get correct picture of the pandemic,” Pawar said in her written reply. (PTI)