New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday said that money collected under the PM CARES Fund for the coronavirus pandemic cannot be directed to be deposited or transferred to the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF), a statutory fund created under section 46 of the Disaster Management Act of 2005 (DM Act).Also Read - School Reopening Latest Update: 'Let Governments Decide', Supreme Court's BIG Statement on Reopening of Schools
Notably, the top court was hearing a petition filed by an NGO — Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL), seeking all contributions made to the PM Cares Fund till date to be transferred to the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF). Also Read - NEET-SS 2021: Doctors Knock Supreme Court’s Door Challenging 'Abrupt Last-minute Changes' in Exam Pattern
While disposing of the petition, Supreme Court said that there is no need for fresh national disaster relief plan, Furthermore, it noted that NDRF is a statutorily created fund and it has nothing to do with the PM Cares Fund. Also Read - 'Third Wave Not in Offing Immediately', Supreme Court Allows Kerala Govt to Hold Class XI Exams Offline
On March 28, the Centre had set up the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM CARES) Fund with the primary objective to deal with any kind of emergency situation like the one currently posed by the COVID-19 outbreak and provide relief to those affected.
The prime minister is the ex-officio chairman of the fund and the defence, home and finance ministers are its ex-officio trustees.
“Supreme Court of India upholds the validity of PM Cares Fund. Refuses to instruct government to transfer fund to NDRF. Hope that should send out a message… loud and clear,” Union Minister Jitendra Singh tweeted soon after the SC’s order.