Cong, BJP to file PILs over violation of NFSA rules

Bhubaneswar: Opposition Congress will file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Odisha High Court soon over alleged violation of rules in the distribution of cards under the the National Food Security Act (NFSA). This was announced by Congress chief whip Tara Prasad Bahinipati on Sunday here.

“The State government neither set up the Food Commission or vigilance committee in the district or a committee at panchayat level as required under the NFSA. I have discussed with the advocate Pitambar Acharya regarding the BJD government’s rule violation and the State Congress will file a PIL on this soon,” Bahinipati told media persons.

Mounting an attack on Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Bahinipati said, “The Naveen Patnaik government has violated the law and we will fight against it legally,” adding the State government does not have the desire to provide ration cards to poor people.

“The chief minister’s only concern is how to ensure that party workers and those who vote for BJD get the ration cards,” the Congress leader said.

Though name of many BJD leaders are in the beneficiary list for ration cards, the State government has not filed any FIR yet, Bahinipati pointed out.

Meanwhile, the State unit of BJP is also considering knocking on the doors of the Odisha High Court in a day or two challenging the way the State government has gone about implementing the NFSA.

BJP general secretary Manmohan Samal said, “Firstly, the State government has not set up the Food Commission as required by the NFSA. They have not put in place the system needed for implementation of the NFSA. Besides, the State government has published advertisements regarding NFSA illegally. We are having legal consultations and a decision will be taken in a day or two.”

Notably, as per the National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA), it is incumbent on every State Government to constitute a State Food Commission for the purpose of monitoring and reviewing the implementation of the Act.

In case a State decides to set up State Food Commission on an exclusive basis, the Centre will provide one-time financial assistance for non-building assets for the Commission, said a notification issued by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution.