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Delhi HC to hear on Monday plea seeking to avoid identity verification for food distribution amid lockdown

ANI | Updated: Apr 24, 2020 20:59 IST


New Delhi [India], April 24 (ANI): Delhi High Court will hear on Monday a petition filed by an NGO seeking directions to the Delhi government to ensure no one goes hungry because of technical grounds like want of proper identity proof during the COVID-19 lockdown.
This application moved in a case, which is already going on in the High Court, pleaded to "continue providing mid-day meals, either in the form of cooked meals or equivalent quantities of dry rations or food allowance in lieu of cooked meals, in all government schools".
It said that the application is necessitated following information received by the petitioners about 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.

The application said that it is leading to a detrimental impact on the right to life of a larger number of people and their sustenance and survival during the period of the distress caused by the ongoing lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19 pandemic.
The application sought directions to ensure that such denial of access to food grain and other key resources are immediately redressed during the lockdown as it has led to large scale and sudden loss of livelihood of workers in the informal sector, daily wagers, self-employed persons working as plumbers, carpenters, rickshaw pullers, street hawkers, etc, and has plunged lakhs of people into food insecurity and hunger.
It sought directions to Delhi government to set up and operationalize the accountability and Grievance Redress System as envisaged in 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 and direct the respondent regarding information be provided proactively in the public domain.
Further, it sought to quash the notification dated February 8, 2017, issued by the Union of India effectively making the production of proof of possession of or proof of enrolment to Aadhaar mandatory for accessing subsidized foodgrains under the National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA) as being ultra vires the Constitution.
During the proceedings in the case earlier, the High Court was apprised of the state of NFSA implementation in the national capital in terms of the Delhi government not having promulgated rules for the implementation of the act, the constitution of the State Food Commission, and provisions of grievance redressal and accountability mechanisms. (ANI)

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