COVID-19 testing: Delhi HC directs Capital to ramp up RT-PCR testing; calls for ‘quantum leap’

In Delhi, 14,000 RT-PCR tests are being conducted in one day as compared to 50,000 rapid antigen tests per day.

As the number of Coronavirus cases surge in Delhi, the High Court has called for “quantum leap” when it comes for the testing of the infection. The HC has asked the state government to ramp up the testing capacity. It has also directed an Expert Committee to hold a meeting on priority where the current COVID-19 testing will be discussed and to what extent, the RT-PCR testing can be increased in Delhi, The IE reported. According to the report, the division bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Subramonium Prasad believes that conducting more RT-PCR tests in the National Capital is the way forward.

It is to note that in Delhi, 14,000 RT-PCR tests are being conducted in one day as compared to 50,000 rapid antigen tests per day. The court said that the city should at least be testing 50 per cent of the overall tests through RT-PCR. The report said that in response to this, the Delhi government stated that it will implement the court’s order.

Further, according to Additional Standing Counsel Satyakam, there should be an actual benchmark for Delhi, other than an imaginary one. He noted that the testing in Delhi is best for now as the state is doing as much testing as it can. While it may not be at number one in the country as far as testing is concerned but it is at 10th, he said. To this, the court replied that the city is doing best is a statement that should deem fit for residents than coming from the state executives.

The high court emphasised that the city had managed to lower the cases to below 1,000 per day once and it should focus on doing it again. With rapid antigen tests resulting in false negative results and asymptomatic patients moving free giving an impetus to COVID-19 transmission, the court felt that it has become a matter of concern.

Meanwhile, the number of cases has been increasing in Delhi with more than 4,000 on a rise everyday. So far, Delhi has recorded more than 2.3 lakh cases.

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