Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his address to the nation, on Tuesday announced the extension of PM Gareeb Kalyan Anna Yojana till the end of November, which is likely to cost the exchequer more than Rs 90,000 crore. PM Modi also said that the government is going to bring 'One Nation, One Ration Card' to ensure fair price food distribution for migrants workers and their families. The central government had announced this scheme in June last year.
Earlier in May, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said that 100 per cent of ration cardholders will be covered in 'one nation, one ration card' scheme by March 2021. This will allow people to avail the benefits under the PDS system wherever they are in the country. It will be implemented for all public distribution system beneficiaries by March 2021, FM Sitharaman had said. She had said that public distribution ration cards can be used in any ration shop in any part of the country.
"So if there is a ration card holder in Bihar or Karnataka, tomorrow he moves to Rajasthan. He can take his food ration from any ration shop in that state. So national portability is being defined as 'One Nation, One Ration Card'," the FM had said.
By August 2020, 67 crore beneficiaries in 23 states, which is 83 per cent of all the PDS population, will get covered by this 'One Nation, One Ration Card', she stated.
The main objective of the scheme is to introduce nation-wide portability of ration card holders under National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA), to lift their entitlement food grains from any fair-price shop in the country without the need to obtain a new ration card, by integrating the existing PDS systems/portals of States/UTs with the Central systems/portals, etc.
By Chitranjan Kumar