New Delhi: With the total of 18 districts of Orissa included in the list of 150 extremely poor districts of the country, the state tops the set of data compiled by the Planning Commission on the instructions of the Supreme Court. The Apex Court has directed the Planning Commission to prepare the list of extremely poor districts in the country to provide them the required additional foodgrains.

Orissa holds the first position with 18 districts of the state featuring in the list, followed by 15 districts each of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar. 14 districts of Jharkhand too have been included in the list.

The Supreme Court on 14 May, 2011, had ordered the Union government to provide the 50 million tonnes of additional food grains to 150 poorest districts of the country.  Moreover, the Court warned the State governments to ensure that no starvation death was reported.

The Supreme Court appointed Vigilance Committee headed by Justice DP Wadhwa which is taking care of food distribution to the poor has asked the Planning Commission to provide the statics of poor districts.

Planning Commission has provided two lists to the Committee. The first list of 150 most backward districts facilitates the scheme of food in return of work.

The second list of 147 backward districts was prepared to implement the Rashtriya Sam Vikas Yojana. The Committee has given the nod to provide additional food grains to 147 backward and poor districts in second list and have also included few more districts in the list.

The Committee has directed the concerned states to provide numbers of poor residing in districts given in the list and has asked for the requirement of additional foodgrains.

These details have been included in the report filed by Wadhwa committee in the Supreme Court. The Apex Court will hear the case on August 18.

The prepared list of poor districts of the country also includes 11 districts of Maharashtra, 10 of Chhattisgarh, 8 districts from Andhra Pradesh, 8 districts from West Bengal , 6 of Gujarat, 5 each from Rajasthan and Assam,  4 of Tamil Nadu, 3 districts each from Uttarakhand, Karnataka and Jammu and Kashmir, 1 districts each from Haryana and Punjab.  In addition, one district from Sikkim, Tripura, Kerala, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland is also included in the list.

The Planning Commission has made it clear that they do not have perfect figures to prove that the districts detailed in the list as poorest of the country.

In addition to the detailed discussion to provide foodgrains to the poor in the report filed by Wadhwa Committee, the report also suggest including those who earn Rs 60,000 per annum under the BPL category.

(JPN/Bureau)