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Delhi Oxygen Crisis: Supreme Court Breather To Centre On HC Contempt Notice

New Delhi: The Central and Delhi governments are doing their best amid the oxygen crisis and it is pointless to jail officials for contempt, the Supreme Court said on Wednesday before staying a Delhi High Court’s contempt notice against officials for not following its orders.

The top court, however, directed the Centre to place before it a “comprehensive plan” by Thursday morning to ensure that Delhi received its quota of 700 metric tonnes of oxygen.

A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and MR Shah recommended that the Centre take notes from the “Mumbai model” to try and ensure oxygen supplies to Delhi. It also refused to stop the High Court from monitoring the oxygen situation.

“Between the Centre and State putting officers in jail or hauling them up for contempt, the people of Delhi won’t get oxygen,” the Supreme Court said while hearing the Centre’s plea against the contempt charges.

“We direct that by 10.30 am tomorrow (Thursday), the Centre shall place a comprehensive plan in the form of a chart, indicating the manner in which the direction for allocation of 700 metric tonnes shall be complied with,” the court said, adding that it was answerable to the citizens of Delhi. “We do not want contempt proceedings. We want action on the ground,” the bench was quoted as saying by NDTV.

When the Central government said Delhi can manage with 500 tonnes of the gas, the court disagreed saying its own orders were for 700 tonnes and that the 550 tonnes that the city was getting now won’t solve the problem.