NEW DELHI: In view of recovery in the economy, the central government has no plans to extend distribution of free ration via the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKAY) beyond November 30.
The food security welfare scheme was launched by the central government in March 2020 during the Covid-19 pandemic under which needy people were provided with free ration.
Food Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey said on Friday that there has been a recovery in the country’s economy and good disposal of foodgrains in the open market under the Open Market Sales Scheme (OMSS) policy.
The PMGKAY was announced in March 2020 and initially the scheme was rolled out for April-June 2020 period but was later extended till November 30.
“Since the economy is also reviving and our OMSS disposal of foodgrains has also been exceptionally good this year, there is no proposal to extend PMGKAY,” Pandey said on Friday.
Under the PMGKAY, the central government supplies free ration to 80 crore ration card holders identified under the National Food Security Act (NFSA).
The free ration is given over and above the subsidised grains distributed to them via ration shops.
The central government has been providing foodgrains like rice and wheat to bulk consumers under the OMSS policy to improve availability in the domestic market and check prices.