Not so sweet Onam ahead - no ration sugar, shortage of atta, parboiled rice in state
Alappuzha: This year, sugar will not be supplied through ration shops across the state. The decision was taken in view of possible financial liability as the sugar bought for Rs 36 per kilogram will have to be sold at Rs 21/kg.
There are 86 lakh ration card holders in the state. Supplying subsidized sugar through ration shops to card holders would cost Rs 13 crore to the government. It is not feasible in the present situation where government is struggling to provide free ration to flood victims.
Till 2018, all ration card holders were provided 1 kilogram of sugar for Onam. This is the first year the special sugar supply is being cancelled. The permanent sugar share for card holders were cancelled earlier. It was later restored for those yellow card holders (AAY category). These persons will obtain sugar at Rs 21 per kilo as usual.
Meanwhile, the ration shops are facing severe scarcity of atta and parboiled rice (Puzhukalari). It was announced earlier that the blue (nonpriority subsidy) and white (nonpriority non-subsidy) card holders will be given 2 to 3 kilograms of atta. But the ration shops only have the stock to give 1 kilogram.
Adequate parboiled rice and raw rice have not reached the ration shops. Instead, puncha rice and white puncha rice have been provided. However, these are in low demand.