Kolkata: “Will we not get ration cards in an independent country?” asked the tribal groups in West Bengal.

The indigenous group had gone to seek a local MLA after a survey by a voluntary organization found that the residents of several indigenous villages in Birbhum did not have ration cards.

Mohammad Bazar block of Birbhum district has a sizable population of the tribal community. Many residents of several villages in local Bharkata Panchayat do not get ration. And, this has been an unsolved problem and the reason behind it is unknown.

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Surajmuni Murmu, 51, a resident of Jethia village, said, “I haven't had a ration card for a long time. So, I don’t get any ration materials. Many men from different states live in their in-law’s house in Birbhum. They also don’t have ration cards.”

According to reports, people of the tribal community approached the local MLA and Agriculture minister Ashish Banerjee seeking help to get access to ration cards. The Agriculture minister has asked the district administration to look into the matter. The Surrey sub-divisional magistrate then visited the area and took note of the complaints.

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However, the big question that needs to be answered is -When will these people get their ration cards?

Agriculture minister Ashish Bandyopadhyay said, “After receiving complaints from the people of the area, I immediately ordered the District Magistrate directives to look into the matter. Those who are deprived will get their ration cards soon.”

Meanwhile, the voluntary organization has also conducted a survey in several villages of Palashbuni, Jethia, and Dholkata of Bhandakata Panchayat. The survey found out that over 450 people did not have a ration card.

Local panchayat member Gupin Mardio has admitted the truth about this incident. He said, “Several people are deprived of ration materials. We informed the MLA about the issue. After that, the Surrey subdivision came to the area and heard the complaints.”