Centre Proposes Six Months Advance Allocation of PDS Grains #Goodnews


New Delhi: The central government on Thursday decided to allow states to lift and distribute six months’ quota of food grains under the Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) in one go.

The decision has been taken in view of its granaries overflowing and record food production for the third year in a row.

Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution KV Thomas has written to the states, requesting them to make the most of the facility of advance lifting of food grains, according to an official statement.

“This will not only ease the problem of additional storage in view of increased procurement but also ensure uninterrupted supply of ration to the beneficiaries,” it said, reports IANS.

India‘s food grain stocks are 71.21 million tonnes as of May 1 with 38.19 million tonnes of wheat and 33 million tonnes of rice, according to the Food Corporation of India.

Thomas has also requested states to ensure lifting of additional allocation of 60 lakh tonnes grains for above poverty line (APL) families and 15.40 lakh tonnes for the poorest districts in 12 states made during 2011-12.

He regretted that states had lifted only 27 per cent of the additional grain allocation made during the current year.

Further the ministry has asked the states not to force the beneficiaries to lift the additional quota in one go and let them take the grains as per convenience.

In order to ensure transparency, the states have been advised that the bulk distribution may be made as far as possible in the presence of state government officials, representatives of Panchayati Raj institutions, members of vigilance committees in Gram Sabhas and NGOs concerned.

Centre Proposes Six Months Advance Allocation of PDS Grains

New Delhi: The central government on Thursday decided to allow states to lift and distribute six months’ quota of food grains under the Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) in one go.

The decision has been taken in view of its granaries overflowing and record food production for the third year in a row.

Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution KV Thomas has written to the states, requesting them to make the most of the facility of advance lifting of food grains, according to an official statement.

“This will not only ease the problem of additional storage in view of increased procurement but also ensure uninterrupted supply of ration to the beneficiaries,” it said, reports IANS.

India’s food grain stocks are 71.21 million tonnes as of May 1 with 38.19 million tonnes of wheat and 33 million tonnes of rice, according to the Food Corporation of India.

Thomas has also requested states to ensure lifting of additional allocation of 60 lakh tonnes grains for above poverty line (APL) families and 15.40 lakh tonnes for the poorest districts in 12 states made during 2011-12.

He regretted that states had lifted only 27 per cent of the additional grain allocation made during the current year.

Further the ministry has asked the states not to force the beneficiaries to lift the additional quota in one go and let them take the grains as per convenience.

In order to ensure transparency, the states have been advised that the bulk distribution may be made as far as possible in the presence of state government officials, representatives of Panchayati Raj institutions, members of vigilance committees in Gram Sabhas and NGOs concerned.

In a communication sent to the Chief Ministers of all the States/UTs, Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Prof K.V. Thomas has requested the states to avail the facility of advance lifting of food grains and its onward distribution to the TPDS beneficiaries to the maximum extent possible. This will not only ease the problem of additional storage in view of increased procurement but also ensure uninterrupted supply of ration to the beneficiaries.Prof Thomas has also requested the States to ensure lifting of additional allocation of 60 lakh tons for Above Poverty Line (APL) and 15.40 lakh tons for poorest districts in 12 States made during the current year under TPDS to the States/UTs. He has regretted that the states have lifted only 27 percent of the allocation made to these districts during 2011-12.

Regarding the six months advance allocation of ration to PDS beneficiaries in one go, the States have been advised to ensure that beneficiaries are not compelled to lift their entire allocation in one go and it should be purely voluntary. In order to ensure transparency, states have been advised that the bulk distribution may be made as far as possible in the presence of state government officials, representatives of Panchayati Raj Institutions, members of vigilance committees in Gram Sabhas and NGOs concerned.

Criminal waste of food grain in Punjab?


4 May 2012, , TIMES NOW

After food Minister KV Thomas revealed the waste of over 70,000 tons of wheat in Punjab in the last year alone TIMES NOW uncovered how official apathy continues to result in the waste of food grain. In a country where 23 crore people go hungry every day can we allow this criminal wastage?

In a country where millions go hungry every day, where food prices break the back of the common man, an estimated 231 million (23.1 crore) people in India go hungry every day, each minute, five Indians die of hunger – i.e., 7000 each day and 2.5 million people every year a bumper harvest is today rotting in godowns and the situation in Punjab is glaring at India.

‘66,306 tonne of the winter crop stored by state agencies in Punjab and 10,456 tonne in Haryana were rendered damaged/non-issuable in 2011-12′, said Food Minister KV Thomas.

With the union food ministry claiming that over 70,000 tonnes of wheat has been left to rot in the storage facilities across the state.

TIMES NOW revealed the shocking apathy that led to criminal waste of food grains. We traveled to two such godowns of the Punjab state Government agro, where wheat stocks face complete neglect.

A guard of one go-down in Dera village in Fategarh sahib said, “4 lakh quintals of wheat has rotten completely. Some new stock was added here last year but that too has rotten now.”

The guard on duty in another such go -down spilled the beans on the colossal waste of food grains over the years, where fresh stock was dumped without clearing the older harvest. The guard at the Punjab Agro go-down in Sirhind said, “The fresh stock came last year. Else it has been lying here for 2-3 years and no one takes it. No one takes care of it.”

The problem is not restricted to storage alone. At one of the largest grain markets of Asia traders allege that the government officials work at a tardy pace, doing nothing to save even the fresh harvest.

Even as Punjab is saddled with the food grain pile up the state government passes the buck to the Centre, blaming the Union Government for the massive crisis.

India’s food grain production may be at an all time high this year with numbers likely to touch 250 million tonnes, but if Punjab Govt and the Centre don’t wake up this precious grain that could feed millions will once again be left to rot another year. Maybe if they wake up now 2 and a half million people in India who die of hunger each year could just be saved.

WATCH THE VIDEO HERE

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