New Delhi: The Secretary, Department of Food and Public Distribution under Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution has sent letters to Chief Secretaries of all States and Union Territories requesting them to ensure that all eligible disabled persons are included under the National Food Security Act 2013. The Chief Secretaries have been requested to personally intervene in the matter and direct the concerned Departments/officials and especially District Administrations to ensure that appropriate mechanism is put in place and whole machinery is mobilised in mission mode for compliance of directions made by the Department of Food and Public Distribution to States Governments/UTs.
Earlier, directions were issued to States/UTs vide letter dated August 22, 2020. The Department of Food & Public Distribution advised all States/UTs to ensure that all disabled persons, who are eligible as per identification criteria of beneficiaries under NFSA, are covered under the National Food Security Act 2013 and they get their entitled quota of food grains under NFSA & PMGKAY as per provisions of the Act.
It was also stated in the letter dated August 22, 2020 that those not already covered should be covered with fresh ration cards to be issued as per the eligibility criteria. It is also reiterated that disability is one of the criteria for inclusion of beneficiaries under AAY households and as disabled persons are vulnerable section of the society. The letter further advised that it is imperative that they are also covered by States/UTs under the priority households as per the criteria of identification evolved by them.
The Section 38 of the National Food Security Act mandates that the Central Government may from time to time give directions to the State Governments for effective implementation of the provisions of the Act.