DIMAPUR, JUNE 23: Accusing the State Social Welfare Department of flouting Central Government guidelines and Supreme Court directives on implementation of ICDS programme, the Nagaland Public Rights Awareness and Action Forum (NPRAAF) has asked the Department to make known to the general public why it continues to defy Central Government and the apex Court directives.
In a press release, NPRAAF also demanded the Social Welfare Department to make public the number of beneficiaries in different categories and fund allocated district-wise for two years (2020-2021 and 2021-2022).
NPRAAF informed that in a meeting held with the Social Welfare Department on March 17, 2021, it had raised these issues but even after a year the Department has not taken any visible steps to address the issues. It implored the Department to follow Government of India guidelines and Supreme Court directive in procuring supplementary nutritional programme (SNP) ICDS flagship scheme.
The guidelines include precautionary measures and to follow simple protocol for food handling at different stages for take home ration (THR), hot cooked meal (HCM) and morning snacks.
“However, flouting all GoI rules and Supreme Court directives the Social Welfare Department has unilaterally and arbitrarily allows the contractors to supply unhealthy and unhygienic food items and at the same time continues to violates CVC guidelines by illegally renewing contract of the suppliers after expiry of contract term, without calling for legitimate e-tendering and further allows the contractors to supply the same”, it alleged.
NPRAAF also demanded to know if the categories of beneficiaries enlisted by the Department have the certification or authentication by respective Deputy Commissioner or by any nodal officer. It warned that in the event of Department’s failure to address the issue within 20 days time, NPRAAF will initiate appropriate legal and democratic action.
“NPRAAF will not be held responsible in the event of fund embargo imposed to the Social Welfare Department by the Centre for choosing to remain oblivious to the NPRAAF call for larger public interest”, it said. The Forum also informed that it will soon come out with “more shocking and sensational revelation” of the Department’s misuse of public fund with corroborated evidence.
(Page News Service)