No illegality in West Bengal govt’s Duare Ration scheme, rules Calcutta high court | Kolkata News – Times of India

KOLKATA: The Calcutta high court has held that there is no illegality in the West Bengal Duare Ration scheme, under which the Mamata Banerjee government delivers foodgrains through the public distribution system at the doorsteps of beneficiaries.
Passing judgement on a plea challenging the state government’s Duare Ration scheme, Justice Krishna Rao noted that on an earlier occasion, too, fair price shop dealers had filed petitions on similar issue, but the high court, even then, did not interfere with the Duare Ration Scheme.
Justice Rao, in the judgement passed on June 16, observed that as per provisions of the National Food Security Act (NFSA), 2013, it is the obligation of the state government to ensure actual delivery or supply of the foodgrains to the entitled persons at prices specified.
The court held that the state government’s decision to deliver foodgrains at the doorsteps of the beneficiaries “cannot be said to be in violation of any provision of the NFSA”.
A writ application filed before the court prayed that a notification by the state government on September 13, 2021 which amended a clause of the West Bengal Public Distribution System (Maintenance and Control) Order, 2013, be declared as “unconstitutional and ultra vires (beyond powers) to Essential Commodities Act, 1955 and National Food Security Act, 2013.
The petitioners’ counsel submitted that the central government has authority for regulating and prohibiting the production, supply and distribution of essential commodities.
He said that the central government by way of notification delegates the power to the state but in this case, it has not delegated any power to the State of West Bengal.
Advocate General S N Mookherjee, appearing for the state government, prayed that the Duare Ration Scheme is an administrative order under the purview of the NFSA, 2013 which makes the state government responsible for actual delivery of grains to the beneficiaries.


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