Union Cabinet approves free food grain under PMGKAY for 2 months

The Union Cabinet chaired by PM Modi gave its ex-post facto approval for the allocation of additional food grains under PMGKAY Phase III for two months-May and June 2021. 

Created On: May 5, 2021 16:17 ISTModified On: May 5, 2021 16:17 IST
Government approves free food grain allocation

The Union Cabinet gave its approval on May 5, 2021, for an allocation of additional food grain to the NFSA beneficiaries under the government’s Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (Phase III). The additional food grain will be given for the period of 2 months- May and June 2021.

The Union Cabinet chaired by PM Modi gave its ex-post facto approval for the allocation of additional food grains under PMGKAY Phase III for two months.

Under the additional allocation, 5 kg of food grain will be given per person free of cost, covering around 79.88 crores beneficiaries under NFSA (National Food Security Act) including those covered under DBT.

According to the official release, the additional food grain allocated will entail an estimated food subsidy of Rs. 25332.92 crores. It will take the estimated Economic Cost of Rs. 36789.2/MT for rice and Rs. 25731.4/MT for the wheat.

Why the additional allocation is important?

The official release states that the additional allocation of the food grains will ameliorate the hardships that are faced by the poor of the country because of the economic disruption caused by the COVID-19.

It added that no poor family will suffer because of the non-availability of the food grains due to the economic disruption in the next two months.

Key Highlights:

•  The State/UT wise allocation of wheat and rice will be decided by the Food and Public Distribution Department on the basis of the existing allocation ratio under the NFSA.

•  The Food and Public Distribution Department will also be deciding on the extension of the lifting or the distribution period under PMGKAY as per the operational requirements keeping into consideration the partial and local lockdown situations, adverse weather conditions such as cyclones, monsoons, COVID induced constraints and supply chain.

•  The total outgo under the additional allocation in terms of the food grains will be approximately 80 lakh metric tonnes.

Background:

PMGKAY is a food security scheme. It was announced by the Indian Government amid the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. The Food and Public Distribution Department is responsible for operating the program under the Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ministry.

It aims at providing food grains to the poorest of the country through the Public Distribution System. Under PMGKAY, 5 kg of wheat or rice per person and 1 kg of dal are provided to each family holding the ration card.

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