BENGALURU: In a bid to mitigate the adverse impact of the lockdown on the vulnerable sections of people, the state government has provided interstate portability to ration cards, through which people of other states can avail foodgrains from any fair price depot in any part of the state.In a statement filed before the division bench of Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and Justice BV Nagarathna, the state government said families with ration cards from other states can avail of foodgrains from any fair price depot in the state under interstate portability norms of National Food Security Act (NFSA). Migrant workers, daily wage workers, etc., from other states with ration cards in their native states can use this facility to obtain their entitlements.
Every month, on an average 5 lakh families avail of this facility. “Door-to-door delivery may be considered in extreme cases, where circumstances warrant the same, as per the assessment of the district administration,” the government said in the statement. The government has claimed that it is taking all possible steps to mitigate the adverse impact of the lockdown on vulnerable sections, such as people who are stranded, the homeless, daily-wage workers, and labourers/migrant labourers, among others.
However, the bench noted that a large section of citizens have been adversely affected by the lockdown. “Only by way of illustration, we are referring to beggars, transgenders and sex workers. Moreover, there may be a category of people who have been deprived of their daily earnings,” it said.“Many people belonging to these marginalised categoryiesmay not have ration cards.
Therefore, as directed under the order dated March 30, 2020, the state government should immediately take a decision on the question of providing rations to this category of citizens on the production of an authenticated proof of identity. While the state government takes its decision, it will have to bear in mind that those who belong to the marginalised category may not be in a position to pay for the rations,” the High Court said.