20,000 officials for streamlining PDS

 The State government will put in place a system to process applications for new ration cards and also keep tabs on the existing beneficiaries by deputing officials at the fair price shop level, Minister of State for Food and Civil Supplies Dinesh Gundu Rao said on Monday.

Speaking to reporters here after holding a video-conference with deputy commissioners on the implementation of the Anna Bhagya scheme, Rao said the ‘Fair price shop level officers’(FLOs) will be drawn from the existing pool of village accountants, revenue inspectors and panchayat development officers. The government proposes to depute FLOs across 20,000 fair price shops in the state within the next two months.

He said the department has received 20 lakh applications for new BPL cards and five lakh applications for new APL cards. The FLOs, once deputed, would process the applications at the fair price shop level. They will also keep a tab on the ration card holders attached to each fair price shop and update the list on an annual basis.

They will link the ration cards holders along with their Aadhaar and Elector’s Photo Identity Card (EPIC) card numbers.  They will be discharging these responsibilities along with the work allotted to them by their parent departments, he said.

Subsidised kerosene

Rao said the department plans to introduce Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme for sale of subsidised kerosene in Mysore and Tumkur districts, where the coverage of Aadhaar is high.

He said the government will float tenders through NCDEX on Tuesday or procurement of ragi and jowar for distribution through fair price shops at Re one per kg to BPL families. A cabinet sub-committee headed by Law Minister T B Jayachandra will decide on minimum support price for procuring ragi and jowar directly from farmers, he said.

The minister said the government has decided to seize available sugar stock from a sugar factory in Belgaum as it had failed to remit 13,000 tonnes of levy sugar to the government.

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