The Congress on Tuesday hailed the Supreme Court judgement in which it gave directions to the Centre and state governments to provide dry ration to migrant workers and hoped the Narendra Modi government will implement it in letter and spirit.
In a statement, Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala said the Centre should put the latest numbers of the NSS Household Consumption Survey "in the public domain within one week from today" and inform people about the preparations of the new NSS Household Consumption Survey.
He alleged that the Modi Government has "deliberately sabotaged" the National Food Security Act, 2013, a legislation brought by the Congress- UPA Government.
The Congress leader said that the Supreme Court judgement is a "wake-up call and an eye-opener" for the government.
He said the court slammed the "lackadaisical attitude" of the Ministry of Labour and Employment.
"When the unorganized workers are waiting for registration and are waiting to reap the benefit of various welfare schemes of the States and Centre, the apathy and lackadaisical attitude by the Ministry of Labour and Employment is unpardonable," Surjewala said, citing the judgement.
He said Labour and Employment Santosh Kumar Gangwar should be removed following judgement.
Surjewala asked if Home Minister Amit Shah was "equally responsible" and also sought an apology from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
He said the Supreme Court has pointed out as to how despite the passage of ten years since the NSS Household Consumption Survey for 2011-2012, the Modi Government has been relying upon the same old data (of 2011-12) to determine the beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act, 2013".
"While fresh NSS Household Consumption Survey is conducted every five years, however, in order to deprive the new beneficiaries of the benefits of ration/ food items under the 2013 Act, the Government has willfully withheld the numbers of the 2017 NSS Household Consumption Survey and has not even bothered to take steps to conduct the 2021-22 NSS Consumption Survey. This is nothing short of a crime by the BJP Government," Surjewala said.
"While it should have been the solemn duty of the Central Government to ensure that appropriate and timely allocation of food grains be made to all states, we are happy that today the Supreme Court has given appropriate directions to the Centre, in order to ensure proper food security to our migrant brothers and sisters. We hope the Modi government will implement it in letter and spirit," he added.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday issued a slew of directions to the Centre and state governments ordering them to provide dry ration to migrant workers and continue community kitchens for them till the pandemic continues.
A Bench of Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice MR Shah also directed the Centre and states to complete the registration of all migrant workers, including those in the unorganised sectors, positively by July 31.
The top court has set July 31 as the deadline to implement the 'one nation one ration card' scheme.
It also asked the Centre to develop a portal in consultation with the NIC to register unorganised and migrant workers and complete the portal and commence the process not later than July 31.
It directed the Centre to allocate and distribute additional food grains as per demands of the state for the migrants.
The directions of the apex court came while delivering the verdict in the application filed in the already pending case registered by the court suo moto relating to the welfare of migrant workers during the lockdown due to COVID-19.