Nipah
The Kerala High Court said that the state health department had acted swiftly to contain the Nipah virus outbreak.

The Nipah virus outbreak which plagued Kerala in May, saw the state health department working on overdrive to effectively ride through the crisis. With the state government now having withdrawn high alert measures and declaring that the outbreak had been contained, efforts of the medical personnel involved have garnered praises from several quarters.

On Wednesday, the Kerala High Court commended the health department's work in effectively containing the Nipah virus and took note of the selfless work done by scores of medical staff.

Live Law reported that Chief Justice Roy - who is hearing a petition filed by two law students asking for misleading videos on Nipah to be taken down from Facebook - said that "the health workers had gone beyond the realms of their duties to render selfless service, unmindful of health risks."

Furthermore, the court orally observed that the health department had effectively worked to contain the outbreak. The Chief Justice also lauded Dr RS Gopakumar, who performed the last rites of patients who died of Nipah.

Dr Gopakumar, a member of the task force constituted on May 20 by the Kozhikode District Collector UV Jose and Directorate of Health Services to tackle the Nipah Virus, has performed the last rites of several Nipah patients. This, at a time when crematorium staff members refused to cremate the bodies, fearing contracting the virus themselves.

Also read: ‘It is my duty’: This Kerala doctor performed the last rites of several victims of Nipah

The case

The Division Bench of Chief Justice Hrishikesh Roy and Justice CT Ravi Kumar were considering a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by two law students, seeking directions to take down misleading videos on Nipah, from Facebook and YouTube.

The videos were that of naturopathy practitioners Mohanan Vaidyar and Jacob Vadakkanchery, who posted misleading information about Nipah virus. The state government told the court that directions have already been given to Facebook and YouTube to taken down the videos.

Also read: Kerala govt to crack down on fake messages on Nipah virus, warns legal action