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Modi Government’s Subsidy Scheme for 80 Crore Indian Population : Wheat at 2 Rs/kg and Rice at 3 Rupees /Kg

Dr. Lakshmi Unnithan
Dr. Lakshmi Unnithan

On Wednesday, the Modi government in its cabinet meeting has taken major decisions to ensure the supply of essential services to its citizens. This could be the Modi govt’s largest ration subsidy scheme for 80 Cr Indians;

As Coronavirus hits the country, each corner of the nation is facing difficulty due to the lockdown all over India. The majorly hit are the people living below poverty line. As the upper Middle class and Middle class hoard food at home , the rural and the poor are left with nothing. Most suppliers are also getting curfew passes done and getting permissions for opening the godowns.

The Cabinet Meeting was done in the Centre with strict vigil in New Delhi and they also practiced Social distancing. Social Distancing and Staying at home is the best strategy to combat the Corona virus, says the Cabinet.21 days lock down is for us, for the society, for the family and for our country says the Honourable Minister Prakash Javedhkar at the Cabinet Meeting.

The Minister also reiterates that there will be no shortage of food. Its applaudable that a major decision has been taken today to supply Wheat at 2 rupees per kg and Rice at 3 rupees to nearly 80 crore of the population.80 crore will get 7 kg ration every month, including wheat at a cost of Rs 2 per kg, instead of Rs 27 per kg; and rice at cost of Rs 3 per kg, instead of Rs 37 per kg.

This was a much needed step towards the survival of the people below the poverty line. We aren’t sure about how the 80 Crore people will be selected and on what basis will it be sorted amongst people. We are unsure whether they will be the red and yellow card holders? We hope this doesn’t create opportunities for scams and the money and the food doesn’t reach the poor. We hope there is utmost transparency in all these transactions. The minister has also assures in the mean while that there will be no shortage of food products and there will be ample availability of essential goods during the lockdown. 

This comes in the wake of when States are have already been offering free and subsidized rations. In Delhi the Monthly allocation per head of wheat and rice was raised from 7 kg, from 5 kg, without any charge. The UP government is giving free one-month ration for almost 16.5 million poor. In Rajasthan, 10 million families below the poverty line (BPL) to get free wheat for two months in advance. Food packets with essential items for people outside the NFSA ambit and in Karnataka they get Two months’ quota of 10 kg rice and 2 kg wheat for each BPL family, free of cost.

One of the outstanding efforts which I felt is the glorious support the Kerala Government is offering to the citizens of the state. After having suffered two debilitating  floods in the last two years and yet In Kerala food grains will be provided to families from all genera whether hey are poor or not . The Kerala government has decided also to facilitate loans worth Rs 2,000 crore through a self-help group ‘Kudumbashree’ in the nature of a consumer loan to those impacted by Covid-19.

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