JAIPUR: In a special tribute to former PM Rajiv Gandhi on his 76th birth anniversary, the Ashok Gehlot government has started its ambitious 'Indira Rasoi scheme' in Rajasthan. Under the scheme, nutritious food will be sold to poor people in urban areas for Rs 8 per meal for which the government will provide a subsidy of Rs 12 per meal.
In the programme, arrangements will also be made to enable people to sit in the canteen and eat their food with dignity. The state government is aiming to fed 4.87 crore people annually.
The chief minister inaugurated the scheme virtually on Thursday and also took feedback from beneficiaries through video conferencing. During the inauguration, 10 Indira Rasoi canteen served the people in Jaipur Municipal area.
In each plate of food, people will get 100 grams of pulses, 100 grams of vegetables, 250 grams of chapati, and pickles. Food will be provided to people in 358 Rasois (kitchens) which have been set up in 213 urban local bodies across the state. A special app has also been created for effective monitoring of food quality.
Meals under the scheme will be made available from 8.30 am to 1 pm and again from 5 pm to 8 pm. There will be no need to show any documents to avail of the subsidised meals and anyone can simply walk into the canteen, pay Rs 8, and get the meals.
Speaking on the occasion, CM Gehlot said, “Indira Rasoi is a big step towards our resolve to ensure no one goes hungry in the state. Without voluntary agencies and donors, no experiment like this can be fully successful. I thank and congratulate all those who are contributing to this novel scheme through which we will ensure that the poor and needy can eat with dignity.”
UDH Minister Shanti Dhariwal said, “our CM had announced that nobody in the state will have to go hungry or sleep on an empty stomach. We sent a committee of three Principal Secretaries to study similar schemes in Bangalore, Madhya Pradesh, and other areas so that we could create a really effective scheme to fight hunger in our state.”
Though each plate will be priced at Rs 20, the state government will grant a subsidy of Rs 12 per plate with an estimated expenditure of Rs 100 crore every year. The scheme aims to serve food to 1.34 lakh people per day in the state. Interestingly, the Indira Rasois will be fully digital and will have CCTV cameras installed to ensure that the quality of food and cleanliness of premises is maintained.
Two years ago, just a few months before the 2018 Vidhan sabha elections, the former Vasundhara Raje government had also started a similar programme called Annapoorna Rasoi to feed the poor and win votes. Later, the Congress had scrapped that scheme.