The Food and Civil Supplies Department will in all probability start distributing new ration cards in a week’s time.
According to sources, the department has completed all ground works for distributing new ration cards, both Above Poverty Line (APL) and Below Poverty Line (BPL). The card distribution is likely to be launched by Food and Civil Supplies Minister Shobha Karandlaje by this week end.
The department has begun sending SMS alerts to the applicants, informing them to register their biometric details at the respective local offices. For those who have not given their cellphone number, information is being sent through post and email.
Department has installed fingerprint readers in about 765 places, including select gram panchayats, taluk offices and department’s deputy directors’ offices, for recording biometric details.
As many as 21 lakh people from across the State, including seven lakh from Bangalore, have applied for new ration cards.
The department has been conducting a thorough verification of the authenticity of applications by visiting the applicants’ residential addresses. Submission of Revenue Register (RR) number (issued by the power supply utility) is mandatory to get a new ration card.
The department stopped issuing new ration cards about a year ago in order to bring in a new, foolproof system of issuing ration cards. In the previous system, the government had outsourced the ration card distribution work to a private company.
The outsourced company had recklessly distributed the cards, resulting in considerable increase in number of bogus ration cards, sources said. Hence, the department took up a drive to weed out bogus cards, besides evolving a new system of ration card distribution.
So far, the department has cancelled about 40 lakh bogus ration cards, mostly BPL cards, across the State.
Change of address
The department has also introduced a system wherein sms alert will be sent confirming change of addresses of LPG consumers. Soon after one submits a proof of residence and RR number details to the local LPG distributor, the Food and Civil Supplies Department verifies the details and sends an SMS to the consumer.
* Food and Civil Supplies Department to issue new ration cards soon
* Dept has started sending SMS alerts to applicants
* Applicants need to give their biometric details