PANAJI: To curb instances of black marketing and hoarding of foodgrains provided under the Public Distribution Scheme (PDS), Goa government will install biometric machines in the fair price shops across the state.
"Directorate of Civil Supplies will be installing biometric machines on a pilot basis in 43 out of the total 450 fair price shops in the state by end of this month or early next month," Civic Supplies department director Vilas Naik Gaunekar told PTI today.
He said the move will help to curb any possibility of black marketing or hoarding of the grains which are supplied by the government under the Food Security Act.
The Goa government has joined hands with the Hyderabad-based Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL) for the project.
ECIL will provide the machines, which are fitted with a SIM card and they operate on GPRS, Gaunekar said.
"After installation of these machines, the ration card holder will have to give his/her thumb impression on it once they avail the benefit," Gaunekar said.
"The machines are linked to Aadhaar card records and the department will get real time data of how much (food) grain has been picked up by the beneficiaries," he added.
According to the officer, the department intends to install such machines in all the fair price shops by the end of this year.
"Currently we have 3.1 lakh (ration) cards in the state after cancelling 1.2 lakh duplicate or bogus ration cards," Gaunekar added.