NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Thursday directed Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to provide dry ration, adequate transport and set up community kitchens for benefit of the migrant labourers in National Capital Region (NCR).
A bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and MR Shah issued the directions in this regard and said, “Dry ration be provided to migrant workers in National Capital Region under Atma Nirbhar Bharat Scheme or any other scheme be provided by the Union of India, NCT of Delhi, State of UP and State of Haryana utilising the Public Distribution System prevalent in each State with effect from May, 2021.”
The court also made it clear that while providing dry ration, the authorities of the states shall not insist on an identity card for those migrant labourers who do not possess (the same) for the time being. On self-declaration made by the stranded migrant labourers, dry ration be given to them.
The court also directed that adequate transport is provided to stranded migrant labourers (in the National Capital Region) who want to return home. District Administration in coordination with Police Administration may identify such stranded migrant labourers and facilitate their transport either by road transport or train.
Central government may also consider issuing necessary instructions to Ministry of Railways to take necessary and adequate measures to cater the need of migrant labourers. It was further directed by the bench to open community kitchen at well-advertised places for stranded migrant labourers so that they and their family members who are stranded could get two meals a day.
The order came on an application by activists Harsh Mander, Anjali Bhardwaj and Jagdeep Chhokar, who had approached the court seeking directions to ensure that migrant workers are not deprived of ration and food security and are able to travel back to their homes at nominal cost. The court may ask states to file their responses on the issues raised in the plea.