New Delhi: The government is working on introducing the formula of “One nation, one card” whereby the poor can get ration through ration cards anywhere in the country, food minister Ram Vilas Paswan informed the Rajya Sabha on Friday.
The minister said food subsidy by the government has touched Rs 1,45,000 crore and wheat at Rs 2 per kg and rice at Rs 3 per kg are provided to the poor under the scheme.
Mr Paswan said, “The target is to complete the formalities of the scheme in one year. The availability of PoS (Point of Sale) machines need to be ensured at all PDS shops to implement the scheme. PoS machines are available at all PDS shops in various states, like Andhra Pradesh, Haryana and a few other others, but 100 per cent availability is required to provide the benefit across the country.”
The scheme is aimed at providing freedom to beneficiaries, as they will not be tied to one PDS shop, reduce their dependence on shop owners and curtail corruption. It will also help the migrant population in the country as it is always on the move.
As per the statement from the nodal ministry the Integrated Management of PDS (IMPDS), under which beneficiaries can avail their share of food grain from any district, is operational in Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Telangana and Tripura.
The minister said there are no changes initiated in the scheme despite high cost of food procurement and there is no leakage in the scheme as the same is distributed to the poor in coordination with the state government.
“There are no changes made in the scheme in the last five years and wheat, rice and other food items are provided to the poor through ration cards at subsidised rates”