|Early Times Report |
Jammu, Mar 25: Former Minister and senior Congress leader Raman Bhalla on Wednesday urged LG Murmu Administration to provide free ration to those in need, during the national lockdown.
"In the light of this crisis, I would urge government to provide free ration to all those in need until the lockdown continues, which will be over and above the provisions of the Food Security Act."Until the lockdown, the identification process of beneficiaries may be waived off," he said.
Bhalla expressed his concern about the poor, daily wage labourers, farmers and the marginalised. "They will be the biggest suffers in our war against this pandemic," he said. He also sought that the allocation of PM-Kisan be tripled and the entire outstanding sum be transferred to all the identified beneficiaries in two tranches. Further, the government may consider providing similar cash transfer to needy and they may be identified from the pool of Jan Dhan account holders, Bhalla said.Bhalla also asked the government to create a National Corona Fund with three main objectives - help states recover some of the costs of this pandemic; provide relief to small businesses, farmers & daily wage earners; and fund testing kits, vaccine research and other necessary innovation.
Bhalla requested LG to take immediate steps for rescuing the daily wage workers and poor families whose livelihoods have come under severe threat because of lack of daily work during lockdowns and curfews."The government should provide poor families with ration for two months consisting of rice, edible oil, pulses, sugar, vegetables and other essential commodities. This should be delivered to their doorsteps.
In addition, Rs. 5,000 financial assistance should be given to each family in this time of extreme distress," Bhalla said. He expressed concern over almost 300% hike in the vegetable prices in the open market and demanded government intervention with serious action on black marketers and middlemen.
People who are working day and night for you and your safety are your unknown heroes. With the help of such warriors, the government and the system are fighting against Corona but as a society, we also have a responsibility. There have been reports about many people who fled from the hospital when they were kept in isolation on suspicion of infection, but the police caught and brought them back, Bhalla added.
Meanwhile, he also condemned the terror attack on a Gurudwara in Afghanistan that killed over 20 devotees and wounded as many, in what is seen as one of the deadliest attacks on the Sikh community in the country.
Slamming the attack, Bhalla said, "such cowardly attacks, on the places of religious worship of the minority community, especially at this time of COVID-19 pandemic, is reflective of the diabolical mindset of the perpetrators and their backers."