Judges Can't Run Government, Ask For Miracles, Centre To Top Court

-NDTV

A bench, headed by Justice M B Lokur, directed the Centre to set up state food commissions, as mandated under the National Food Security Act (NFSA), 2013, even in the states not hit by drought.

New Delhi:
Judges cannot run a government and ask it to do "miracles", Attorney General K K Venugopal today told the Supreme Court while opposing fresh pleas being made by NGO 'Swaraj Abhiyan' in a PIL for relief measures in drought-hit states.

A bench, headed by Justice M B Lokur, directed the Centre to set up state food commissions, as mandated under the National Food Security Act (NFSA), 2013, even in the states not hit by drought.

Mr Venugopal took strongly opposed the submissions of Prashant Bhushan, representing the NGO run by activist Yogendra Yadav, and termed them as fresh ones.

"New submissions are being made every time. The issue (PIL) cannot go on forever. We have filed a detailed affidavit stating all steps are being taken by us. There has to be an end. Your lordships cannot run the government.

"We cannot be asked to do miracles as this is such an enormous task. We are trying to persuade the state governments to do the best thing possible. The government is concerned with the issue and is putting the best way forward. But grant us some time, preferably six months," Mr Venugopal said.

He said that if fresh issues were raised, then there would be no end to the grievances and moreover, the Centre was looking into the issues and has written numerous letters to states concerned.

The bench, also comprising Justice N V Ramana, then told the attorney general that the petition would be confined to only three issues -- delay in payment of wages and compensation, reduction in person days under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme and absence of social audit.

Ordering setting up of state food commissions, the bench said the provisions under the NFSA provided for such commissions in all the states and Union territories (UTs).

"Although this writ petition is confined to 10 states, we have brought it to the notice of the attorney general that since we are dealing with a parliamentary statute namely the National Food Security Act, 2013, it will be appropriate if the provisions of the Act are faithfully implemented in all the states and the Union territories.

"The attorney general has assured us that the matter will be taken up with due earnestness and the provisions of the Act will be implemented in all the states and the UTs. All efforts will be made by the central government in this regard," the bench said.

During the proceedings, the chief secretaries of various states were present in the courtroom. The judges were informed that state food commissions have been set up in Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Karnataka.

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NDTV, 10 August, 2017, http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/judges-cant-run-government-ask-for-miracles-centre-to-top-court-1735679

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