The Union Cabinet on Wednesday has given its ex-post facto approval for allocation of food grains from Central Pool to approximately 8 crore migrants. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had earlier announced that the government will provide 5 kg of grains per person per month for two months free of cost.
"It would entail an estimated food subsidy of about Rs 2,982.27 crore. Further the expenditure towards intra-state transportation and handling charges and dealer’s margin / additional dealer margin will account for about Rs 127.25 crore which will borne fully by Central Government. Accordingly, the total subsidy from the Government of India is estimated at about of Rs 3,109.52 crore," said a statement by the Centre on Wednesday.
"Migrants who are neither registered under national food security act or state card beneficiaries will be provided 5 kg of grains per person and 1 kg chana per family per month for two months," Sitharaman had said.
The government estimates that about 8 crore migrants will be benefit from this move. State governments will be responsible for implementation, identification of migrants, full distribution and coming up with the required guidelines.
Apart from this, a technology driven system will be used to enable migrants to access public distribution system from any fair price shop in India by March 2021. Essentially, this is implementation of the Centre's one nation one ration card scheme talked about by the Centre earlier.
"This scheme will be enable migrant beneficiary to access PDS from any fair price shop in the country," Sitharaman had said. As of now 67 crore beneficiaries in 23 states states amounting to 83 per cent of PDS population have been included in the scheme. "All states will complete full fair price shop automation by March 2021," added Sitharaman.
This comes at a times when even those migrants who have ration cards but are stuck in the other states were not able to procure food grains from fair price shops because of being registered in their home state.