Anil Pushpangadan, Gandhinagar: The leader of opposition in Gujarat Legislative Assembly, Paresh Dhanani had on Wednesday accused the state government of rampant corruption in the public distribution system and lax in stopping black marketeers from pilfering subsidized grains and other supplies worth Rs12,000 crores in the past eight years. Gujarat Food, Civil Supplies, and Consumer Affairs minister Jayesh Radadiya and the chief minister of state Vijay Rupani responded to this by saying that those people who have undeservingly made a fake Below Poverty Line (BPL) ration card for themselves and those who facilitated them in the process won't be spared by the law. But the question is how? The state government had five years ago, withdrawn the law that allowed a police complaint to be registered against those who got themselves a fake BPL ration card and the ones who facilitated in making them. So did the chief minister and the civil supplies minister lie to the citizens just to escape an accusation from the opposition?
According to a resolution passed by the Gujarat government's food, civil supplies and consumer affairs ministry on 17th April,2006, a police complaint can be registered against those people who have got a BPL card made for themselves even though their income doesn't fall under the poverty line for their ration card to be cancelled and action can be taken against them under the Public Distribution Scheme (Control) order 2001. But the state government had withdrawn the law that allowed the filing of a police complaint on 16th November 2013.
The law was passed by the food, civil supplies and consumer affairs ministry and Gujarat government and was withdrawn during the regime of Narendra Modi as the chief minister. It has been five years since this law was pulled back and it is surprising that the current chief minister's office and the secretariat have no clue about this law being withdrawn. So did the government, in order to respond to the accusations of the opposition in the house of Rs12,000 crores worth of supplies meant for the poor people in the state getting pilfered by black marketeers, end up speaking a lie and misleading the citizens of the state?
Speaking to MeraNews, leader of Opposition Paresh Dhanani said that by revoking the law which allowed police complaint against black marketeers, the government has given them a free hand to conduct corrupt practices. It is as if the state has mortgaged the biometrics of its citizens to the black marketeers.