High Court Says JSSK Scheme Beneficiaries In Nagaland Entitled To Benefits - Eastern Mirror
Monday, June 10, 2024

High Court says JSSK scheme beneficiaries in Nagaland entitled to benefits

By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Jun 08, 2024 11:03 pm

KOHIMA — The Kohima Bench of Gauhati High Court has observed that beneficiaries of the Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakram (JSSK) scheme should be entitled to its benefits and entitlements.

The court stated this while disposing of the instant Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking directions for removing the ceiling of benefits capped under the JSSK scheme in the State of Nagaland and to ensure that the pregnant women and sick newborn are given various benefits.  Two PILs were filed on the scheme, with the first one being disposed of with the court directions. Another instant PIL was filed in response to a government notification stating that entitlements provided in the scheme were quantified in money against each of the benefits which were provided under the JSSK scheme.

On this, a bench of Justice Devashis Baruah and Justice Budi Habung, in an order dated June 6, stated that the said direct transfer benefit provided in lieu of providing food and ambulance service cannot be said to be unreasonable or in conflict with the JSSK scheme.

“We at the same breadth, also find it relevant to observe that if the beneficiaries want to avail the food provided in the hospital or the ambulance services, they also should be given the option to opt,” read the order.

“The quantification in terms of money against the benefits/entitlements on the basis of the approval given by National Health Mission is an internal arrangement between the National Health Mission and the States/Union Territories which have no relevance to the entitlement to which the beneficiaries are entitled to as per the JSSK Scheme,” it added.

In its order, the court further stated that the beneficiaries would continue to be entitled to the benefits of the scheme as per the stipulations in the JSSK scheme.

“The State of Nagaland as well as the Union of India would continue to provide the benefits/entitlement as per the JSSK Scheme till the said scheme continues to remain in operation,” it maintained.

Nagaland State Health Mission, in an affidavit, stated that entitlements are provided as per the scheme to the beneficiaries in kind save and except the food value and ambulance costs which are paid to the beneficiaries by direct transfer benefit.

Closing the litigation, the court commended petitioner-inperson, Neiteo Koza, for bringing to the attention of the Court the instant matter. It also appreciated the assistance provided by N Mozhui, the learned standing counsel and Yanger Wati, the learned CGC in the instant PIL.

The JSSK scheme is meant for pregnant women and sick newborn baby. The entitlements for beneficiaries included zero expense treatment (inclusive of delivery and caesarean section), free drugs and consumables, free diagnostics, free provision of blood, free transport from home to health institutions, free transport between facilities in case of referral, free drop back from institutions to home and exemption from all kinds of user charges. In addition, the pregnant woman should be provided with diet during stay in the health institutions (up to three days for normal delivery and seven days for caesarean section).

By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Jun 08, 2024 11:03:07 pm
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