A plea has been moved in the Delhi High Court asking the court to declare the notification requiring mandatory enrollment to Aadhar for accessing subsidised foodgrains under the National Food Security Act as unconstitutional.
Moved by Delhi Rozi-Roti Adhikar Abhiyan, the petition claims that there have been widespread violations in the implementation of the NFSA including ration shops being shut during working hours, denial of access to food grain and other key resources and lack of implementation of necessary grievance redressal and accountability mechanisms.
As per the Petitioner, such non implementation of NFSA amounts to the breach of duty enshrined under Article 21 of the Constitution as it has caused distress to a large number of people who are rendered helpless by the ongoing pandemic.
Therefore, the petition seeks direction to be issued to the Delhi Government to ensure that people are not denied access to foodgrains and other resources at the time of such crisis. This is significant to alleviate the struggle of hundreds of people who have been pushed to hunger and unemployment due to the ongoing lockdown.
'The various food programs under the NFSA are the only life-line for large number of persons and families in Delhi and therefore, it is crucial that these work properly to ensure that every person is able to access the fundamental right to food', the petition states.
The Petitioner also submits that even after 4 years, the Delhi Government has not implemented the provisions of NFSA, especially those pertaining to the establishment of grievance redressal committee and accountability.
In light of this, the Petitioner has asked the court to direct Delhi Government to to set up and operationalise the accountability and Grievance
Redress System (including a State Food Commission, social audits) as envisaged under Sections 14, 15,16 and 28 of the National Food Security Act, 2013 in order to ensure that no one goes hungry for want of food and its denial on any technical ground.
While demanding the continuance of mid-day meal scheme in government schools, the Petitioner also wants the Delhi Government to put up the data regarding ration on its website for public viewing.
This data should show, in real time, stock at ration shops, timings and functioning, quantity of free ration available, shop wise record of sales, among other things.
The present application has been moved through Advocates Apar Gupta and Prasanna S
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