Yoga guru Baba Ramdev was asked by the Delhi High Court on Friday to respond to the lawsuit against him for allegedly spreading misinformation about the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines and allopathic treatments amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Justice Hari Shankar granted a week to Ramdev to file his response and said he would not grant leave for institution of the proceedings in the absence of a reply.
Baba Ramdev was booked under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code and the Disaster Management Act, 2005.
Senior advocate Akhil Sibal, appearing for several doctors’ associations, argued that to grant permission to institute the suit, the court has to only look at the plea before it and need not seek the other party’s response. “It is between me and the court unless it (the plea) is evidently vexatious. Merits will come after I’m permitted,” said Sibal, reported Live Law.
The associations alleged that Ramdev was misleading the public by stating that allopathy was responsible for the deaths of several people infected by COVID-19.
The plea alleged that he was spreading misinformation to boost the sales of the products sold by Ramdev, including Coronil, which claims to be an alternative treatment for COVID-19.
They pleaded for the court to put an end to the misinformation campaign, considering the third wave of COVID-19 is likely to hit in August.
Senior advocate Rajiv Nayar, representing Ramdev, said that the plea was “a second bite at the cherry” and opposed the grant of leave.
The matter would be heard next on August 10.
(With inputs from Live Law)
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