The Delhi High Court Monday directed the Delhi government to ensure disbursal of foodgrains from public distribution system (PDS) outlets to the poor on all seven days of the week. The court’s direction came on a plea that sought effective and time-bound redressal of complaints of non-supply of ration in the national capital.
The plea, filed by Delhi Rozi-Roti Adhikar Abhiyan (DRRAB), also sought urgent need for transparency in the distribution of foodgrains through PDS and other mechanisms like e-coupons to ensure that people do not go hungry during the lockdown.
Taking note of the DRRAB’s plea, a bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Talwant Singh observed that “any person who is hungry should be eligible for grain”.
Stating that the distress caused in the ongoing Covid-19 lockdown has been further aggravated by the denial of access to foodgrain to the poor, under-privileged and marginalized sections, the bench ordered that, “The GNCTD shall ensure that all ration shops remain operational and disburse PDS foodgrains in accordance with the policy formulated by both the central government as well as the state government in this regard.”
It also ordered to ensure delivery of the requisite foodgrains from the PDS ration shops from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm and from 3:00 pm to 07:00 pm, on all seven days of the week.”
The court said that the Delhi government shall further ensure that the “Sub-Divisional Magistrates of each district carry out strict and regular monitoring and oversight of the distribution of food grains, as afore directed and upload the details of shop-wise distribution of ration to both the PDS and non-PDS residents on their official website, at the end of each day”.
The High Court sought replies from the Centre and Delhi government in three days on DRRAB’s plea, and listed the matter for further hearing on May 6.
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