NHRC orders Railways to ensure food quality in Parliament canteen

Bhubaneswar: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has directed the Union ministry of Railways to take appropriate steps to ensure the quality of food served in the Parliament canteen in New Delhi.

The Commission’s directive has came in response to a complaint filed by the Odisha based Human rights activist Akhand.

Mr Akhand had alleged before the commission in last August that “Catering services for Members of Parliament(MPs) Canteen at South Block, North Avenue and at Rail Bhavan at New Delhi are not of good quality. Many MPs were falling sick after consuming food from Parliament canteen. Samajbadi Party members Ram Gopal Yadav and Jaya Bachchan were among them.”

Many parliament members had alleged in Rajya Sabha on July 30 that the food quality were very bad. Even, food items cooked at 6 am were served till late night, causing the problem.
It needs to be mentioned here that catering services of MPs’ Canteen at South Block, North Avenue and at Rail Bhavan are managed by Northern Railways since 1968.

Besides, the regular fare provided to high dignitaries, media representatives and senior bureaucrats of Lok Sabha/Rajya Sabha secretariat. Catering services are supervised by a Joint Committee o¬n Food Management consisting of 15 Hon’ble Members of Parliament from the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha respectively.

Praying for intervention of NHRC, Akhand argued that “Food served to the law makers are not of good qualities. Its negligence on part of Railway as it fails to provide the good quality food.”

Disposing the petition, the NHRC has directed Chairman of Railway Board “to take appropriate action within eight weeks and to inform the complaint of the action taken in the matter.”