Server down, PDS distribution hit in many parts of Chennai

Cardholders return empty handed after biometric authentication fails due to tech issues

Published: 16th September 2022 02:41 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th September 2022 02:41 AM   |  A+A-

An e-PoS machine at a ration shop in Chennai. Slow internet and server issues often mar distribution of commodities through the shops | Ashwin Prasath

An e-PoS machine at a ration shop in Chennai. Slow internet and server issues often mar distribution of commodities through the shops | Ashwin Prasath

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Distribution of commodities has been facing disruption in Chennai and other parts of the State due to glitches in the operation of e-PoS (electronic point of sale) machines at ration shops. On Thursday, thousands of cardholders returned empty-handed after waiting outside ration shops in several parts of the State for over 30 minutes because the biometric authentication could not be done on e-PoS machines.

According to official data, around 86% of the State’s 2.13 crore cardholders buy commodities from ration shops every month. Civil Supplies and Consumer Protection Commissioner V Rajaraman attributed the problem to a server failure. “The issues in server maintenance have been taken up with the department concerned and the matter is being looked into.”

When TNIE visited a few ration shops at Korattur, Ambattur and Pattabiram in Chennai, many consumers claimed that they had often been asked to come back later citing glitches in the verification.“Ever since biometric verification was made mandatory from January, we are facing a lot of trouble,” S Kalai of Oragadam. L Sundhar of Korattur said ration-shop staff often asked them to wait for 10-20 minutes due to delays in connecting to the server. “I tried to verify my fingerprint thrice, but there was no response.” 

On an average, 45-50 cardholders purchase commodities between 8.30 am and 12.30 pm daily. It rises to 60-70 on Saturdays and Sundays. According to sources, network servers had not been upgraded to meet the demand of a huge number of cardholders. “Internet is slow and repeated complaints went unheeded,” said a ration shop employee.

Civil supplies commissioner Rajaraman said circulars had been issued stating that consumers should not be denied products owing to technical glitches in PoS machines. Ration shop employees should record details of ration cards in separate registers and supply products. “We will enforce the direction through cooperation department,” he added.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp