Supreme Court directs States, UTs to provide ration cards to migrants; gives 3 months’ period
The top court had sought data of the number of migrant workers were provided with food under the NFSA as well as other benefits under various government schemes.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the states and union territories to provide ration cards to migrant labourers registered on the ‘e-shram’ government portal within three months.
The bench consisting of Justices MR Shah and Ahsanuddin Amanullah added that it has extended the period so maximum people can take benefit under the National Food Security Act (NFSA).
“We give further three months time to concerned States and Union Territories to issue left out ration cards and register migrants on portal. Concerned authorities to inform Collectors so more and more can take the benefit under NFSA,” stated the bench.
The bench said granting ration cards to migrant labourers registered on the portal be given wide publicity. The matter has been posted for next on October 3, 2024.
The court was hearing a plea seeking that ration should be given to the migrant labourers irrespective of the quota of ration under the NFSA.
Earlier on April 17, the top court had said that the Centre and states cannot deny rations to migrant workers basing on that the populationg ration under the NFSA has not been properly maintained.
It had observed that every citizen should benefit from welfare schemes and said that in a welfare state, it is the duty of the government to reach out to people.
Meanwhile in February this year, the top court had sought data of the number of migrant workers were provided with food under the NFSA as well as other benefits under various government schemes.
This came after the court was informed that out of nearly 38 crore migrant workers across the country, around 28 crores have been registered on an online portal e-Shram operated by the Centre.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the SC had suo motu initiated a case to consider the problems and miseries faced by migrant labourers and unorganised sector workers who were pushed to penury due to the pandemic-induced lockdown and forced to settle in their villages with no source of employment.