SC slams Centre for not supplying food grain to drought-hit states

New Delhi, Oct 5: The Supreme Court on Wednesday slammed the Centre for doing nothing to comply with its directions to supply food grain to the drought-affected areas under the National Food Security Act.

The bench of Justice Madan B. Lokur and Justice N.V. Ramana said, "We will discharge the Union of India (as respondents from the case), if it is not able to do anything."

The apex court also asked the PIL petitioner organisation, Swaraj Abhiyan, to file an affidavit flagging five or six direction that have not been complied with by the drought-hit states for initiation of contempt.

Taking a dim view of the postcard approach of the central government, Justice Lokur said, "The moment we ask you questions, it is construeted as if we are attacking government of India."

As Additional Solicitor General P.S. Narasimha sought to play down the issue, Justice Lokur observed, "An Act of the Parliament (the National Food Security Act) is being violated with impunity, is not a small issue."

The bench said this while asking ASG Narasimha to explain what he had said in the affidavit.

Clearly exasperated over the way things were happening with states not complying with its orders and the Centre telling the court that it had sent them a communication, Justice Ramana said, "If this is the way the matter is going on, there is no need to hear it. We are wasting your time."

"An Act (the National Food Security Act) passed by the Parliament has to be followed by the states. Let them say they don't bother about the Act," Justice Lokur said, asking ASG Narasimha: "Is there a remedy under the Constitution, if states don't comply with the laws passed by the Parliament."