Economy

Pulses not to be part of PM-GKAY scheme

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 24, 2021

The scheme will comprise only cereals such as wheat, rice

Unlike last year, the government will not be distributing pulses as part of the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PM-GKAY) and the scheme will comprise only cereals such as wheat and rice, Food and Public Distribution Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey said on Saturday.

As much as 80 lakh tonnes of foodgrains will be distributed to 80 crore belonging to Antyodaya Ann Yojana and Priority Households during May and June incurring a total expenditure of ₹ 26,000 crore. This will be over and above their entitlement under the National Food Security Act (NFSA).

During PM-GKAY during April to November last year, the government distributed 298.89 lakh tonnes of foodgrains at a cost of around ₹1.05 lakh crore. Almost 93 per cent of the NFSA beneficiaries received benefits under the PM-GKAY scheme.

Explaining why pulses are not part of the PM-GKAY scheme this year, Pandey said the inclusion of pulses in the scheme was exceptional last year. Moreover, once PM-GKAY got over last year, the States were given 5 lakh tonnes of pulses which they distributed through fair price shops.

Answering a question why the scheme was only for two months, the official said the government would review the situation at constant intervals.

Also read: DBT proves an efficient channel in disbursing Covid relief

Since the One Nation Once Ration Card scheme became operational as many as 14 crore transactions, involving a food subsidy of ₹10,000 crore, took place outside the native place of the beneficiaries, helping them access the ration elsewhere.

Rabi procurement

Regarding rabi procurement in the current season, the government has transferred a total of ₹13,600 crore to the accounts of farmers till Friday. Farmers in Punjab received ₹5,598 crore, in Haryana ₹4,215 crore and in Madhya Pradesh ₹3,083 crore. The procurement in Punjab alone was 71 lakh tonnes. Even though Punjab started 10 days later than Haryana, it has already overtaken Haryana in procurement, said Pandey.

Published on April 24, 2021

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