Food Act only to fill half plates

Published: 29th August 2013 10:07 AM  |   Last Updated: 29th August 2013 10:07 AM   |  A+A-

The proposed Food Security Act (FSA) would only cover 50.97 per cent of the population of the Union Territory, while the coverage for the remaining 49.03 per cent  would be under the discretion of the UT government at its own expenses.

Out of a population of 12,47,953 covered under the Public Distribution System (PDS) in the UT, 6,36,135  would be covered under FSA, while 6,11,818 would be left out, according official data.

After working out the coverage as per the provisions of the Act, 59.68 per cent of the rural population and 46.94 per cent of the urban population would be covered under the Act. This includes a rural population of  2,35,855 and urban population of 4,00,280.  The least coverage is in the outlying areas of Mahe and Yanam as both the areas have no rural population and as such only 46.94 per cent of the population is covered.

Out of 3,40,804 ration cards in the UT, a total of 1,59,034 cards would be covered under FSA. This includes 1,20,104 in Puducherry, 26,749 in Karaikal, 5,227 in Mahe and 6,954 in Yanam region.

Incidentally the coverage of 1,59,034 cards  under FSA is more than the existing BPL cards (including Antyodaya Anna Yojana) of 1,48,958 cards.

The government, however, plans to cover all its population for which modalities are being worked out, sources in the government said.

As the financial implication for implementing FSA is getting reduced by one third, the remaining funds would be utilised to provide the foodgrains to the left out people, said the official.

Under FSA, a monthly expenditure of Rs 1.10 crore would be incurred as compared to Rs 3.77 crore per month. The government is planning to give single boiled rice once the FSA is implemented, sources added. 


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