New Delhi [India], Aug 18 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Tuesday held that the money in the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund cannot be directed to be deposited or transferred to the National Disaster Response Fund.

A three-judge bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan said that individuals can contribute to the disaster response fund voluntarily and added that there is no need for a fresh national disaster relief plan. The bench, while refusing to direct the transfer of money in PM CARES to disaster response fund, disposed of a petition filed by NGO — Centre for PIL (CPIL) — seeking to transfer the contributions made to the PM CARES Fund to the National Disaster Response Fund, which is a statutory fund created under the Disaster Management Act.

The Supreme Court had, on July 27, reserved its order on the public interest litigation (PIL) seeking to transfer the contributions in PM CARES to the disaster response fund after hearing arguments from all the sides.

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Earlier, the Central government had submitted before the apex court that the prayer to transfer funds collected in PM CARES Fund to NDRF is not maintainable as the former was created under separate provisions.

The plea had sought directions to the government to prepare, notify and implement a national plan under the DMA to deal with the COVID-19 and claimed that the Centre has been “refraining from divulging information” about the money contributed to the PM CARES Fund till date. (ANI)

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