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PMGKAY: Government decides to extend Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana till Diwali

Chintu Das
Chintu Das

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday announced that the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAYwill be extended till November, allowing 80 million people to continue receiving a monthly ration of free foodgrains. 

“The government has decided that the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana will now be extended until Diwali,” Prime Minister Modi stated in his address to the nation. During this pandemic, the government is assisting the poor with all of their needs.” 

Beneficiaries protected by the National Food Security Act of 2013 are given 5 kg additional foodgrains free of charge per month over and above their usual allocations under PMGKAY, which was started during the first Covid-19 wave last year. 

The administration announced its plan to resume PMGKAY on April 23, this year, in response to an increase in Covid-19 cases. The new version of the PMGKAY, on the other hand, is missing one of its most crucial components: the free delivery of 1 kilogram pulses per month to each NFSA-covered family. 

On March 26, last year, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced PMGKAY as part of the government's Rs 1.70 lakh crore relief package. Initially, the plan was only for the months of May, June, and July. It was later extended to November 2020. 

The Centre has also started a separate initiative to supply stranded migrants with free 5 kg of foodgrain every month for two months. This time, it ruled out the prospect of a similar approach. 

According to the Food Ministry, approximately 80 lakh metric tons of foodgrains will be distributed in May and June this year, with the Centre covering the entire cost of the plan, which is estimated to be over Rs 26,000 crore. 

PMGKAY had begun distribution of foodgrains in 34 states and union territories as of June 3rd 2021. 

According to data available with the Ministry, states have lifted 63.03 LMT and disbursed 28.82 LMT against an allotment of 80 lakh metric tonnes. It reveals that around 55 crore recipients received free foodgrains in May, while around 2.64 crore beneficiaries received their June allotment. 

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