The Delhi High Court today asked the Lieutenant Governor (LG) to finalise and approve the draft rules for regulating de-addiction centres in the national capital within four weeks, saying streamlining the facilities was of paramount importance as the people in need were fairly large in number.
A bench of justices S Muralidhar and Vinod Goel issued the direction after the Delhi government's standing counsel, Rahul Mehra, told the court that the rules, which laid down the minimum standards for such centres, were awaiting the LG's approval, after which those could be notified.
In its order, the court asked the LG to hold a meeting of all the stakeholders, including the State Mental Health Authority (SMHA), before finalising and approving the draft rules.
It said all the persons and entities, including those running de-addiction centres, who would be affected by the draft rules, might give their respective representations to the LG within two weeks from today.
The bench made it clear that no further time could be taken for the exercise as "the number of people requiring de-addiction centres is fairly large and streamlining the centres is of paramount importance".
It also said the LG had to ensure that the steps being taken were brought to the Centre's notice.
The bench then listed the matter for further hearing on August 23.
The high court has been looking into the issue after a habeas corpus petition was filed by the father and brother of a man, who was allegedly illegally detained at a de-addiction centre in the city, where he was admitted by his wife and children on the pretext that he was an alcoholic.
The court had earlier said de-addiction centres should not be used to detain someone without his consent under the guise of rehabilitation.
The court had, in November last year, ordered that such centres running illegally in the national capital be immediately shut down.
It had noted that "unwanted elders are dumped" at such places that operate in the guise of old-age homes.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)