BHUBANESWAR: With the Centre announcing to stop free distribution of ration under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY) after November 30, president of Samajwadi state committee Rabindra Nath Behera urged Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to run a special food security scheme for the vulnerable sections of people for another six months.
In a letter to the Chief Minister, Behera said many people are yet to return to their jobs after the Covid-19 pandemic and their food security is still at stake and needs intervention by the State to mitigate their sufferings. Though the threat of the pandemic has reduced and economic activities revived, a majority of the migrant workers have not yet returned to their jobs and depend on the relief provided by the government.
“We request you to introduce a special food security scheme for the poor people of Odisha beyond November 30 to ensure nobody goes hungry,” the letter said. Food Secretary Sudhansu Pandey on Friday had announced there will be no extension of free ration scheme under Covid relief to the poor beyond November 30.
The Prime Minister had announced distribution of free ration of 5 kg rice or wheat and one kg of dal to each of the beneficiaries of National Food Security Act (NFSA) during the peak period of the pandemic in March 2020. Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had announced that his government will extend distributing free rations under PMGKY till Holi.