SC asks government to discuss relief measures with drought-affected states

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New Delhi, May 11 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed the central government to convene an urgent meetings of the chief secretaries of Haryana, Gujarat and Bihar to assess the drought situation in their states.

The union agriculture secretary should hold the meetings soon with the top bureaucrats of the three states, the court directed.

An apex court bench comprising Justice Madan B.Lokur and Justice N.V.Ramana also directed the government to set up a separate disaster management fund and disaster management force under NDRF for relief work in the drought affected states.

The court also directed the government to put in place effective measures for disaster mitigation in the drought-affected areas.

The court was hearing a plea by the Swaraj Abhiyan NGO seeking its intervention for relief in 11 drought-affected states.

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