The Bombay High Court today granted two more days to the Maharashtra government to issue fresh directives on whether people who have not taken the anti-COVID-19 vaccine or have taken only one dose would be allowed to travel in local trains.

The state government had last week withdrawn three of its circulars issued last year, by which only fully vaccinated people were allowed to use the local trains, considered as the lifeline of Mumbai, and to go to public places like malls and movie theatres.

The government's move to withdraw the circulars came after the High Court said that those orders were illegal and issued without following the procedure prescribed under provisions of the Disaster Management Rules.

The Court was hearing a bunch of Public Interest Litigations challenging the prohibition on use of local trains in the city by unvaccinated people, saying it was illegal, arbitrary, and in breach of the citizens' fundamental right to move freely across the country, as guaranteed by Article 19 (1) (d) of the Constitution.

The state government had last week told the HC that the state executive committee would hold a meeting on February 25, after which fresh directives would be issued.

Today, Government Pleader P P Kakade told the court that the meeting was held, but sought two more days for the order to be issued.

"The minutes of the meeting and all other relevant material have been placed before the chief secretary for his signature. The government officials are busy and held up due to the ongoing Ukraine crisis as several students from Maharashtra are stranded there," Kakade said.

The bench agreed and posted the matter for further hearing on March 2, but also said no further time would be granted.

"Your (government) chief secretary is retiring today. Don't take more time on this ground," Chief Justice Datta said.

To this, Kakade said the chief secretary would sign the fresh order before retiring.

With PTI inputs