Centre okays additional foodgrain to BPL families
State govts have to lift grains before March 31, 2014
The Centre on Thursday decided to make available an additional 50 lakh tonne foodgrain to 6.52 crore families below the poverty line (BPL) during the current financial year.
Various state governments would have to lift the additional allocation of foodgrain before March 31, 2014, or till they implement the National Food Security law.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, approved a proposal of the Ministry of Food and Consumer Affairs to make the additional allocation, which is expected to cost the exchequer Rs 9,471 crore.
The additional foodgrain would be made available to states at subsidised prices of Rs 5.65 per kg of rice and Rs 4.15 per kg of wheat.
Delhi, Uttarkhand and Haryana have begun implementing the new food security law, which aims to provide legal right to subsidised foodgrain to nearly 67 per cent of the state’s population.
The Centre has been making the additional allocations of wheat and rice to states for distribution to the BPL families since 2010-11 given that the foodgrain stock in its warehouses is sufficient.
As of September 1, foodgrain stock in the government godowns was around 59 million tonnes (mt), which includes 38.3 mt of wheat and 20.5 mt of rice.
For above poverty line (APL) families, the government had, in May, allocated 6 mt of extra foodgrain for this fiscal.
In June, the government approved the sale of 10.5 mt of foodgrain in the open market to check rising prices.