In the last three months, more than 87 per cent beneficiaries of ‘One Nation One Ration Card’ (ONORC) in Delhi had ration cards in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. It is known from government data.
According to data provided by the Food and Civil Supplies Department, between August 25 and October 25, about 1,78,850 people with ration cards from other states were supplied food grains under ONORC in Delhi.
According to the data, out of 1,78,850 distributions of food grains under ONORC, 1,55,715 or 87.06 per cent were on ration cards issued in Bihar (78,195) and Uttar Pradesh (77,520). Under this scheme, persons holding ration cards under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) can get their monthly quota of food grains from any fair price shop across the country.
The ‘portability’ depends on the e-POS machine, which uses Aadhaar-linked biometric authentication to verify the identity and eligibility of the beneficiaries. A senior official of the Food and Civil Supplies Department said that the scheme is a boon for migrant workers and other such temporary population living in the national capital as they can get ration from any fair price shop.
The official said that the majority of the migrant population in Delhi is from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, so this number is reflected in the ONORC supply in the city. Apart from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar in Delhi, ONORC beneficiaries from other states include people from Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan. 5,764 people with ration cards from Madhya Pradesh collected ration under the ONORC scheme in Delhi between August and October 25. Similarly, around 2,313 people with ration cards made in Haryana took food grains from fair price shops in Delhi during this period. After this 1,184 beneficiaries of Rajasthan took ration.
The data also showed that between July and October 25, 1,94,685 people with ration cards from other states were supplied food grains under the ONORC scheme in Delhi. In July, 16,150 distributions took place under the ONORC scheme, while in August the number was 40,797. The number rose to 86,430 in September, while in October at least 51348 people with ration cards of another state had taken free ration from fair price shops in Delhi under ONORC.
Compared to September, there was a slight decrease in the number of ONORC beneficiaries in October, which officials say was due to the festive season.
The official said that since a large part of the migrant population has moved to their hometowns during the start of the festivals in October, the number of distributions under ONORC appears to be slightly lower. We hope that in the coming months, more and more people in Delhi will take advantage of the ONORC scheme.
The Delhi government distributes free ration to the beneficiaries through electronic point of sale (e-POS) devices under the National Food Security Act, 2013 and Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY). Delhi has 17.78 lakh cardholders and around 72.77 lakh beneficiaries. There are more than 2,000 fair price shops in the city.
Shailendra Kumar, President, Public Distribution Welfare Association said that ONORC is proving good for the migrant population living in Delhi, who have ration cards from other states. Shailendra Kumar said that the data shows that Delhi is one of the top performing states in the ONORC scheme. With the implementation of this scheme, people having ration cards of other states can get free food grains from any fair price shop in the city.
No proposal to extend free ration scheme beyond November 30: Food Secretary
There is no proposal of the Central Government to extend the distribution of free ration under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY) beyond November 30. Union Food Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey said on Friday that there is no proposal to extend free ration distribution through PMGKAY beyond November in view of the recovery in the economy and good sale of food grains in the open market under the OMSS policy.
PMGKAY was announced in March 2020 to address the crisis caused by COVID-19. Initially, the scheme was launched for a period of three months from April-June 2020, but was later extended for five more months (July-November 2020) as the crisis continued.
PMGKAY was once again implemented for two months (May-June 2021) at the start of the second wave of the corona pandemic and was later extended for five months (July-November 2021).
Asked whether the government will go ahead with the scheme, Pandey told reporters during a press briefing that since the economy is recovering and the sale of food grains under our Free Market Sales Scheme (OMSS) this year has also been exceptionally high. It’s been good Hence there is no proposal to extend PMGKAY. He said that the OMSS policy has been consumer friendly this year.
Under PMGKAY, the government supplies free ration to 80 crore ration cardholders under the National Food Security Act (NFSA). They are given free ration in addition to subsidized food grains through ration shops. The government is supplying rice and wheat to bulk consumers under the OMSS policy to improve availability and curb prices in the domestic market.