Debate ONORC in Assembly, State must have control in its implementation: Bhaichung

Thursday, Aug 05, 2021 07:45 [IST]

Last Update: Thursday, Aug 05, 2021 02:13 [IST]

Debate ONORC in Assembly, State must have control in its implementation: Bhaichung


GANGTOK,: Hamro Sikkim Party (HSP) acting president Bhaichung Bhutia has stressed that ‘One Ration, One Ration Card’ should be debated in Sikkim Legislative Assembly for safeguarding local interests and empowering the State government to have some control in its implementation.
“Food & Civil Supplies minister Arun Upreti speaks about ONORC sitting in a room. Chief Minister P.S. Golay launches ONORC from a room. This is not how you implement.  Such a sensitive matter should have been first discussed in the Assembly and feedback from intellectuals should have been taken before implementation,” said Bhaichung in a live social media address on Wednesday.
“There must some control of the State government in ONORC implementation and priority fixed for local people. How would the State government manage if there is a food grain shortage in future?  Will they give ration to locals or migrant workers in such a scenario? Yes, we must accept Supreme Court’s order and poor, no matter which part of India, should get food security. At the same time, the State government should make its own law to have control on ONORC implementation but the SKM government showed great haste in implementing ONORC without any discussions,” said the HSP acting president.
Bhaichung claimed that the SKM government showed urgency in ONORC implementation so as to get a huge loan from the Centre. It is only the SKM government which is benefiting from ONORC by getting the huge loan, he said.
The HSP acting president disagreed with the SKM’s stand that ONORC will curb influx as migrant workers cannot make ration cards in Sikkim due to the new policy.
“Sikkim offers a good environment to attract migrant workers. So far, migrant workers have been coming to Sikkim without their families to save expenses on food ration. Now with ONORC, they and their families can get ration here based on the ration card of their home States. So obviously they will be tempted to bring their families also to Sikkim as now they can afford it. I don’t understand how the SKM is saying that ONORC will check influx,” said Bhaichung.
Bhaichung said there is a concern among people of Sikkim that whether ONORC is the precursor for future national reforms like ‘One Nation, One Law’ and ‘One Nation, One Tax’. Sikkimese are concerned whether ONORC will dilute Article 371F now or in future and I feel that ONORC is opening doors in future to weaken Article 371F, he added.
“The present government should properly study ONORC and have a debate in the Assembly. Article 371F should be given long term protection and at the same time, ensure that migrant workers also get the benefit of food security,” said the HSP acting president.
Bhaichung added that lone opposition MLA and former Chief Minister Pawan Chamling should attend the Assembly sessions.

Sikkim at a Glance

  • Area: 7096 Sq Kms
  • Capital: Gangtok
  • Altitude: 5,840 ft
  • Population: 6.10 Lakhs
  • Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 to over 28,509 ft above sea level
  • Climate:
  • Summer: Min- 13°C - Max 21°C
  • Winter: Min- 0.48°C - Max 13°C
  • Rainfall: 325 cms per annum
  • Language Spoken: Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha, Tibetan, English, Hindi