Large BPL families to get more grain under Central scheme
By Shyam Sundar Vattam | Published: 12th September 2013 08:10 AM |
Nearly eight lakh families with more than six members will get additional food grains once the Food Security Act comes into force in the state.
At present, the state government is giving 30 kg rice to six-member families under the Anna Bhagya scheme. In contrast to this, the Food Security Act does not put a ceiling on the number of family members and it provides 5 kg food grains to each member of the family. Therefore once the Act is implemented, an eight-member family will get 40 kg rice.
Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao told Express that the Centre’s ambitious scheme of providing food to all poor families across the country is likely to be launched in the state on November 19 to coincide with the birth anniversary of former PM Indira Gandhi.
With the distribution of wheat, jowar, ragi and red boiled rice to BPL and Anthyodaya cardholders from October 2, the burden on rice will be reduced by 70,000 metric tonnes every month.
According to an estimate, the department may require around 20,000 metric tonnes of wheat, 30,000 metric tonnes of jowar and around 20,000 metric tonnes of ragi every month.
Distributing other food grains will save the exchequer a portion of money it is spending on buying rice from the Chhattisgarh government, Dinesh said. The government has already decided to purchase ragi and jowar at a minimum support price of `1,800 per tonne.
He said a proposal has been forwarded to the Finance Department seeking a hike in commission to the fair price shop owners. At present, the owners get `31 commission per quintal. The department is studying the commission being paid to fair price shop owners in other states. A decision will be taken soon, he said and added that the transport cost borne by the FPS owners in urban areas to lift the stock from the godown to shops would be reimbursed by the department.
The minister said the Centre has decontrolled sugar from this year because of which they need to buy sugar from two government-owned sugar factories.
For the next two years, the Centre will pay a subsidy of `18.50 per kg of sugar and thereafter it would be stopped. Karnataka requires around 1.10 lakh metric tonnes of sugar and the government sugar factories may supply around 65,000 metric tonnes. The rest of the quantity will be purchased from the open market.
A meeting of the sub-committee will be held on Thursday where they will discuss the matter. Henceforth, the government cannot collect levy sugar from any sugar factory across the state.
Plans are afoot to provide free LPG connection to SC/ST families with the help of Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike to make Bangalore kerosene-free city, he added.