Execute ‘One Nation One Ration Card’ scheme, Supreme Court tells Bengal

“You cannot cite one problem or other. This is for migrant workers”

The Supreme Court on Friday insisted that West Bengal government must implement the ‘One Nation One Ration Card’ scheme for the benefit of migrant workers.

The scheme gives migrants access to food grains in any fair price shop anywhere in the country, no matter where their ration card is registered.

“You must implement the One Nation One Ration Card scheme,” Justice M.R. Shah, accompanying Justice Ashok Bhushan on a Special Bench, told West Bengal, represented by advocate Liz Mathew.

Ms. Mathew said the State would definitely implement the scheme, but was facing issues regarding the Aadhaar card seeding.

“You cannot cite one problem or other. This is for migrant workers, so they can avail welfare benefits under various government schemes,” Justice Shah said.

The exchange happened during a suo motu hearing on welfare measures for migrant labourers, especially during the hard times brought by the pandemic.

The court is monitoring the steps taken by the Centre to take care of the basic needs of migrant families, including free food grains and community kitchens.

The court reserved the case for judgment.

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