SC summons chief secys of 9 drought-affected states

SC summons chief secys of  9 drought-affected states

The Supreme Court on Wednesday summoned the chief secretaries of nine drought-affected states, including Karnataka, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat, for failing to implement the National Food Security Act.

A bench of Justices M B Lokur and N V Ramana said despite considerable time having passed since the law came into force, these states have failed to enforce it. “It is a matter of concern that a Parliamentary statute is not being given importance. Article 21 (Protection of Life and Personal Liberty) of the Constitution is also involved. The State Food Commission, as mandated under section 16 of the National Food Security Act, has not being appointed,” the bench said.

Observing that the law passed by Parliament cannot be given a go-by, the bench said, “We summon the chief secretaries of the states. We require the chief secretaries to appoint the state food commission, and the details should be furnished by an affidavit on April 26.”

Other states whose chief secretaries have been summoned include Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Jharkhand, Bihar, Haryana and Chhattisgarh.

The court exempted the chief secretaries of Odisha and Uttar Pradesh, which has complied with certain directions, and Telangana, which has initiated the process of constituting the commission.

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