While hearings in several cases had to be adjourned, the only time the sessions court showed signs of activity was at Aryan Khan’s bail plea hearing.
Public prosecutor Rakesh Tiwari said hearings were adjourned as advocates and witnesses couldn’t attend hearings due to the transport being affected. Public prosecutor Sumesh Panjwani, who appears in the special court for narcotics cases, said courts were crippled as most witnesses in such cases are police witnesses who could not appear as they were busy in bandobast duty.
The hearings in the Bombay High Court, though, were relatively unaffected. Advocate Atal Dubey said the advocates and government officials attended court hearings. Junior advocates who travel by buses couldn’t come to the HC.
Ashraf Ahmed Shaikh, who handles criminal cases, said that the court rooms hearing criminal cases were crowded as usual. “Hearings went on as usual in the bail court. There were police officers, advocates, their staff and litigants. Out of nearly 100 matters, the court heard over 75 bail applications,” said Shaikh.
Hospitals, clinics unaffected
Emergency services were not hindered and hospitals didn’t witness any postponements of surgeries. A senior doctor from BYL Nair Hospital said nearly 1,000 patients visited the OPD on Monday compared to nearly 3,000 on normal days. “All necessary measures and steps were taken at the hospital so that patients were not impacted, though they themselves stayed indoors due to lack of transport or fear,” he said.
Meanwhile, KEM Hospital in Parel recorded 3,000 patients in the OPD till 4 pm. “Usual OPD strength here is 7,000-8,000,” said a doctor. The hospital functioning, however, was not affected. Moreover, surgeries were conducted as per schedule.
At JJ Hospital, the routine OPD functioned to full strength. “About 5,000 patients came for treatment, which is a regular figure. Our hospital is in south Mumbai where the bandh was not observed as strictly as it was in the suburbs,” said a senior doctor.
While the civic body kept all its Covid vaccination centres open, the turnout was low. “The real impact on the vaccination numbers will be known when figures from the Centre are collated,” said Dr Mangala Gomare, executive health officer of the BMC.