Gauhati High Court directs Nagaland government to reopen Anganwadi centres
Kohima, July 15 (EMN): The Gauhati High Court, Kohima Bench, has directed the government of Nagaland to make services and benefits of Anganwadi centres available to the poor.
The bench of Justice Songkhupchung Serto and Justice S Hukato Swu gave the directions while hearing a public interest litigation on Wednesday.
“It is common knowledge that the poor have been hit the hardest during this pandemic and they are in need of every help that can be provided. Therefore, it should be the endeavour of everyone responsible to make such services or benefits available at their door steps,” the court observed.
On behalf of the petitioner, Advocate Neiteo Koza submitted that lactating mothers and children who are from the economically lower strata have been deprived of their entitlements under the Food Security Act due to the closure of Angawadi centres.
‘In view of the pandemic, this section of the society has even more need for nutrition supplements to build up their immune system against the Covid-19 virus. Therefore, the state government should open the Angawadi centres once again so that the required services which were provided through them may continue to reach the people,’ she added.
In this regard, the court directed the state government to provide such services or benefits to the people who are entitled under the Food Security Act in accordance with the directions of the Supreme Court and the instruction given by the Union Government.
“We are of the considered view that such services or needs which are most needed by the people in the economically disadvantaged section of our society should be provided at all cost,” it stated.
The court also said that the two learned counsels appearing for the respondents would need to be given time to file affidavits of the respondents.
The court has scheduled the next hearing for July 28 and directed the respondents to file affidavit of compliance and respond to the writ petition.