Delhi

Plea challenges capping non-PDS beneficiaries, HC seeks govt. reply

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked the Delhi government to respond to a plea challenging its non-PDS (public distribution system) guidelines putting a cap of 20 lakh beneficiaries for providing them dry ration.

A Bench of Justice Navin Chawla and Justice Asha Menon gave the direction on an application by NGO Delhi Rozi Roti Adhikar Abhiyan which said foodgrains be given to all needy persons.

Under the scheme, each beneficiary are to be provided with 5 kg foodgrains (4 kg of wheat and 1 kg of rice) free of cost.

Modify guidelines

The NGO has also sought direction to the city government to modify the May 27 guidelines to the extent that it should not be a mere one-time relief measure and that the beneficiaries may receive dry ration (foodgrains) for every calendar month until further orders.

“The impugned guidelines [May 27] have put an arbitrary limit of 20 lakh beneficiaries under the scheme. This limit of 20 lakh appears to have no rational basis whatsoever. The provisioning and the estimate of the number of persons who are in need of the benefits under the scheme ought to be based on the number of people who in fact had benefited under a similar scheme last year,” the plea said.

“In 2020, when the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic occurred, pursuant the orders of this court…, nearly 69.6 lakh persons, who did not possess ration cards, registered under the e-coupon scheme and were provided dry rations. Therefore, rations must be provided to all those who are in need, as also ordered last year,” the plea said.

The NGO also asked the authorities to provide for a helpline number for people to register complaints over registering or availing benefits under the scheme and a mandate for nodal officers to place on the official website the action taken by them within 24 hours of receiving a complaint.


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Printable version | Jul 26, 2021 4:50:09 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/plea-challenges-capping-non-pds-beneficiaries-hc-seeks-govt-reply/article34834188.ece

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