The Tamil Nadu government has implemented the National Food Security Act, effective from 1 November, without affecting the already existing Universal Public Distribution System (PDS), which entitles rice to all rice cardholders.
The move comes after the Centre conveyed to Tamil Nadu that monthly food grain allocation to Above Poverty Line (APL) beneficiaries would be at Minimum Support Price derived rate, as the “state has so far not implemented NFSA,” a Cooperation, Food and Consumer Protection Department order said. T
As part of the NFSA, only 50.55 per cent of the State’s population — around 3.6 crore out of 7.2 crore — is eligible to be given rice at a subsidised price. Each person is entitled to five kg per month. So, if a family card has 10 beneficiaries, it will get 50 kg a month.
The state government shall have to bear the additional expenditure on this account. This will result in an additional commitment of about Rs.1,193.30 crore per annum,” said the order from the Tamil Nadu government.
“With a view to protect the Universal PDS which the state has been adopting at present, in which rice is supplied to all rice cardholders without any discrimination, it has been decided to retain and continue the Universal PDS in Tamil Nadu while implementing NFSA,” the statement said.
Meanwhile, PMK leader S Ramadoss has alleged that Tamil Nadu has ceded its rights by agreeing to implement the National Food Security Act (NFSA).