VIJAYAWADA: The United Forum for RTI Campaign-AP (UFRTI-AP) has urged Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy to ease norms in tribal areas towards distribution of essential commodities through the public distribution system (PDS) and further to get Covid-19 vaccination. The forum lamented that many tribal people do not have ration and Aadhaar cards which are essential to get Corona vaccination and essential commodities.
The UFRTI-AP Co-Conveners, Chakradhar Buddha, Emmanuel Dasari and J. Srinivas Goud Chalapati, said that they had written a letter to the Chief Minister on Thursday, seeking exemptions for PDS rations and Corona vaccines in tribal areas.
They said that AP has a considerable tribal population (5 million as per 2011 census), and they are primarily located in the 35 Scheduled Mandals spread across different districts of the state. These areas are also home to Particularly vulnerable tribal groups (PVTGs). They stated that 8,500 ration card applications were rejected in agency areas in the last one year occurred due to a faulty 6-step verification process, which offers a complicated system for redressal of grievances.
The UFRTI-AP leaders stated that the vulnerable and marginalised tribes may need to cross rivers and forests, travel many kilometres, and spend their own money to correct the errors for which they are not responsible. They urged the CM to universalise PDS for the duration of the pandemic in the scheduled mandals for tribals.
They also sought that subsidised/free ration should be diversified, by adding pulses. Rations must be released for multiple months at once to avoid travel hurdles for the tribals. They stated that many tribals were running the risk of missing Covid vaccine as Aadhaar is made mandatory for vaccination hence the state government should follow the Odisha example and accept any ID issued by the governments to tribals. In cases where people do not have any IDs, arrangements should be made for issuing one....