Food Security Act to be implemented in Kerala from March
Thiruvananthapuram: The CPI(M) led LDF government in Kerala today said it will implement the National Food Security Act as a pilot project in Kollam district from
March and it would expanded state-wide from April. "In the first phase, it will be implemented with all parameters, including installation of Point of Sale machines
in all ration shops as per NFSA rules to ensure transparency," Minister for Food and Civil Supplies P Thilothaman told PTI.
The process of providing PoS in around 1,400 ration shops in Kollam district was already on, he said.
"We have already identified warehouses for implementing the project, which also ensures that food articles are made available to ration shops from FCI godowns by state itself," Thilothaman said.
On the Congress led UDF Opposition's charge that supply of rice and wheat through PDS had been badly affected after the
LDF came to power, he said the charge was politically motivated.
Blaming the previous UDF government for the present shortage of food grains under PDS, Thilothaman said though Kerala was eligible for 16.5 lakh million tonnes of rice, it was getting only 14.25 lakh millions as per NFSA norms.
"Though there is shortage of food grains, the state was able to supply rice and wheat free of cost to more than 1.57 crore persons under the priority list, which is a national
one," he said.
"The final list will be published soon, after which new ration cards will be issued by April," he said.
Kerala has demanded that the Centre increase its quota of rice and wheat, Thilothaman said, added LDF would organise a
'Raj Bhavan march' here tomorrow as part of its agitation.
The minister said another major impact of the Centre's "wrong policy" was that there would not be subsidised sugar for distribution through PDS from the next financial year.
"Presently we are supplying 400 grams of sugar per person to cardholders through ration shops," he said. PTI