SC Refuses to Direct Transfer of PM CARES Funds to NDRF

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to direct the Centre to transfer the contributions made to the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM CARES) Fund for battling the COVID-19 pandemic to the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF).

A three judge bench comprising of justices Ashok Bhushan, R.S. Reddy and M.R. Shah said that voluntary contribution can always be made to the NDRF as there is no statutory bar under the Disaster Management Act.

The Centre for Public Interest Litigation has filed a public interest litigation seeking a direction that all the money collected under the PM CARES Fund for the COVID-19 pandemic should be transferred to the NDRF. The PIL had also sought a direction to the government to prepare, notify and implement a national plan under the Disaster Management Act to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The bench in its verdict said that a plan prepared by the government under the Disaster Management Act was sufficient for COVID-19 also.

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