Thiruvananthapuram: The state government has so far spent Rs 4,183 crore to provide free foodgrain kits to ration card holders. The distribution of kits in the state continued even after the suspension of rice and groundnuts provided by the Central Government under the PMGKAY scheme last December. However, the BJP and Union Minister V Muraleedharan are spreading rumors that the Center is providing kits and food grains to school children.
The distribution of free foodgrain kits started from April 2020 following the Kovid crisis. The entire amount is paid by the State Government to Supplyco. About 10 crore food kits were distributed till March. An amount of `4183 crore was spent for this.
Non-priority cardholders were also given 10 kg of rice at Rs 15 each. Under the PMGKAY scheme of the Central Government, the Center had distributed 5 kg of rice per card and 1 kg of peas / card per card. Its distribution was stopped by the Center last December. The Parliamentary Food and Public Distribution Standing Committee had recommended that the free distribution of foodgrains be continued. The state also sent a letter asking for the distribution to continue. Yet to no avail.
Another campaign claims that 75 per cent of the cost of foodgrains currently distributed to school children is central. About 60 per cent of the cost is borne by the Central Government and 40 per cent by the State Government. Transportation costs are borne entirely by the State.
Kit distribution continues
Distribution of food kits for the months of February and March is progressing through ration shops. In March and April, the state had decided to provide 10 kg each to priority cardholders at a rate of Rs 15 per kg. This was blocked by the Election Commission on the complaint of the Leader of the Opposition.
The April kit will also begin distribution soon.
Provided by the State
April: Free grain for priority / non-priority cardholders
May and June: 10 kg of rice at Rs 15 for non-priority cardholders
Five kg of free rice per person for the inmates of Agati Mandirs
130.42 tonnes of rice for community kitchens
1166.52 tonnes of rice and 349994 kg of atta for the guest workers
460.52 tonnes of rice for 36594 families without ration card
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