Depression Can Be Classified As Serious Illness In Context Of COVID-19 Pandemic: Gujarat High Court | News

September 3, 2021 0 Comments



Depression can be classified a serious illness, especially in context of Covid, high court said

Highlights
  • The petitioner suffered depressive cycle during the period of COVID
  • It was a period of wide-spread despondency: High Court
  • He could not convey his feeling of depression: Petitioner’s parents

Ahmedabad: Depression can be classified as a serious illness, especially in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Gujarat High Court has observed, while setting aside the cancellation of registration and admission of an engineering student by a government college for not appearing for requisite exams due to depression and suicidal thoughts.

Also Read: Consultations For Anxiety, Depression, Gaming Addiction Doubled During COVID-19 Pandemic: Study

The court issued the order on August 31 and a copy of it was made available on Thursday. The academic performance review committee of the Surat-based Sardar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology (SVNIT) in October 2020 cancelled the registration and admission of the first-year B Tech (Bachelor of Technology) student, for not earning 25 credits needed for getting promoted to the next semester.

The student challenged this in the HC on the ground that he had suffered from “severe depressive episodes with suicidal ideation”, which started in January 2020 and peaked in May-June last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic situation, which is why he could not appear for the examination.

In the facts and circumstances of the case and more particularly in the context of the currency of the pandemic period, the depressive state of mind and the depression created in the petitioner student, can be classified as serious illness, the court of Justice N V Anjaria observed.

The depressive cycle which the petitioner suffered was during the period of COVID-19 pandemic itself. It was a period of wide-spread despondency, the court noted. It is reasonable to believe that the situation brought about by the pandemic created an adverse effect on the tender-mind of the petitioner, who disengaged himself from the studies, it further said.

Also Read: Study Suggests Strategies To Support Kids’ Mental Health During COVID-19 Pandemic

The ground advanced by the petitioner could be viewed as genuine as there is nothing to disbelieve the same. The stand of the respondent Institute to doubt is insensitive and departs from the facts stated in the letter of the parents fortified by the certificate of doctor. The reason given by the petitioner has to be appreciated in the special circumstance of the pandemic period, the HC observed in its order.

The court, in its interim order on April 23, 2021, allowed the petitioner to appear for the supplementary examination in May 2021, which he passed to secure the requisite credits to be promoted to the next semester.

The reason given by the petitioner has to be appreciated in the special circumstance of the pandemic period. It is the very reason of depressive tendencies developed in the mind of the petitioner during the pandemic which prevented him from applying on medical ground under the said Regulation (of the institute that requires a student to apply prior to the last day of examination if unable to take the exam on medical ground), it said.

Apart from cancelling the registration and admission of the petitioner, the institute had also rejected his subsequent requests to reconsider its decision, which he had challenged in the high court through his lawyer Ronith Joy.

The institute had argued before the court that the case of the petitioner on medical grounds is governed by its regulation that necessitates that a student file an application prior to the last day of examination.

The student had failed to make any such application, it argued, and further stated that the petitioner had not reported any medical illness even while he stayed in a hostel between January and March 2020.

As per the petitioner’s parents, he could not convey his feeling of depression to them due to his introvert nature, and they learnt about it as late as September 2020, when the institute refused to accept the fee for his third semester on account of his termination.

The student’s parents then made several requests to the institute to reconsider its decision and give another chance to their son, but to no avail. In their last communication dated December 25, 2020 with the institute, the parents annexed a doctor’s certificate that stated the patient was “diagnosed with severe depressive episodes with suicidal ideation currently in partial remission”.

His problem started in January 2020, reached its peak in May-June (2020) and now decreased in severity and for that he is put on appropriate treatment, the doctor’s certificate said.

Also Read: Impact Of COVID-19 On The Mental Health Of Children And How Parents Can Help Them

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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World

21,97,98,079Cases

18,31,45,168Active

3,21,00,001Recovered

45,52,910Deaths

Coronavirus has spread to 195 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 21,97,98,079 and 45,52,910 have died; 18,31,45,168 are active cases and 3,21,00,001 have recovered as on September 4, 2021 at 3:51 am.

India

3,29,45,907 42,618Cases

4,05,681 5,903Active

3,21,00,001 36,385Recovered

4,40,225 330Deaths

In India, there are 3,29,45,907 confirmed cases including 4,40,225 deaths. The number of active cases is 4,05,681 and 3,21,00,001 have recovered as on September 4, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
Maharashtra

64,77,987 4,313

53,999 139

62,86,345 4,360

1,37,643 92

Kerala

41,51,455 29,322

2,46,989 6,253

38,83,186 22,938

21,280 131

Karnataka

29,53,064 1,220

18,430 26

28,97,254 1,175

37,380 19

Tamil Nadu

26,19,511 1,568

16,370 108

25,68,161 1,657

34,980 19

Andhra Pradesh

20,18,200 1,520

14,922 220

19,89,391 1,290

13,887 10

Uttar Pradesh

17,09,401 15

239 19

16,86,308 21

22,854 13

West Bengal

15,50,664 686

8,694 40

15,23,487 715

18,483 11

Delhi

14,37,874 35

362 18

14,12,430 17

25,082

Odisha

10,10,072 849

6,563 7

9,95,474 835

8,035 7

Chhattisgarh

10,04,565 37

381 4

9,90,628 40

13,556 1

Rajasthan

9,54,116 8

86 2

9,45,076 6

8,954

Gujarat

8,25,461 16

149 2

8,15,230 17

10,082 1

Madhya Pradesh

7,92,215 18

101 10

7,81,598 8

10,516

Haryana

7,70,534 12

645 2

7,60,208 12

9,681 2

Bihar

7,25,734 6

80 10

7,16,000 16

9,654

Telangana

6,59,007 318

5,736 73

6,49,391 389

3,880 2

Punjab

6,00,745 30

351 2

5,83,957 30

16,437 2

Assam

5,91,117 564

6,505 270

5,78,929 828

5,683 6

Jharkhand

3,47,933 11

141 2

3,42,660 13

5,132

Uttarakhand

3,43,070 36

410 27

3,35,273 9

7,387

Jammu And Kashmir

3,25,714 96

1,380 60

3,19,925 36

4,409

Himachal Pradesh

2,14,193 189

1,767 21

2,08,818 206

3,608 4

Goa

1,74,250 104

896 17

1,70,151 120

3,203 1

Puducherry

1,23,929 127

894 57

1,21,220 70

1,815

Manipur

1,14,774 272

3,267 53

1,09,715 323

1,792 2

Tripura

83,197 70

826 52

81,568 122

803

Meghalaya

76,504 193

2,295 20

72,886 172

1,323 1

Chandigarh

65,114 4

40 3

64,260 1

814

Mizoram

62,817 825

10,517 134

52,080 690

220 1

Arunachal Pradesh

53,217 61

793 36

52,162 96

262 1

Nagaland

30,244 40

757 21

28,861 59

626 2

Sikkim

30,070 45

989 66

28,708 109

373 2

Ladakh

20,576 3

70 2

20,299 1

207

Dadra And Nagar Haveli

10,665 2

6 2

10,655

4

Lakshadweep

10,348

22 3

10,275 3

51

Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,570 3

9 2

7,432 1

129





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