CM to launch distribution of pulses at PDS shops by month end

 Either Tur dal or green gram will be distributed through public distribution system (PDS) shops at a subsidised price from February for BPL card holders.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah will launch the programme by month end, said Minister for Food and Civil Supplies U T Khader.

Speaking to reporters here on Tuesday, he said this initiative is in line with the chief minister’s Independence Day announcement that not only carbohydrates but also proteins would be supplied to BPL card holders, he said. The BPL card holders are given sunflower oil instead of palm oil in Bengaluru and Mangaluru. Whatever subsidy was being given to palm oil will be provided to sunflower oil too and consumers have to pay the differential amount.

Coupon system
Khader said that biometric coupon system for collecting food grains under PDS will be extended to all fair price shops by March 31. The system was introduced to bring in transparency in the distribution of food grains. At present, the coupons are generated at selected gram panchayats and selected franchise in the state, he said.

He also said that the state government wants to convert fair price shops into a seva kendra related to ration cards including submission of applications, making corrections in ration cards and so on in the future.

Online applications
The Food and Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs department launched online registration for APL ration cards and has received good response in the last four days. The department has received 1,101 online applications seeking APL cards in Dakshina Kannada district. This includes 791 applications in Mangaluru taluk, 111 in Puttur taluk, 95 in Bantwal taluks. Out of 1,101 applications, 652 applicants have taken the temporary print out of the ration cards.

Instead of producing multiple documents, Aadhaar card will be enough to apply for an APL ration card online.

Stating that the government has taken several measures to make PDS attractive, Khader said Karnataka is the first state to bring ration cards under Sakaala scheme. With this, the applicant will have the right to know the status of application of the card and expect its delivery within the specified time.

The applicants who have already filed an applications for BPL cards should visit the gram panchayat office and file the application at least once.

The government has cleared a proposal to sell white kerosene oil in the open market to cater to the demand for the product. Anyone interested in selling the kerosene may approach the department for obtaining licence.

Cash coupons
The minister said the department has been planning to bring in changes in its ration coupon system to make it convenient for consumers by issuing cash coupons instead of ration coupons. This could be used to purchase ration from designated retail stores apart from the usual fair price shops.

However, it would be made only optional for the BPL card holders. The scheme is in initial stage and will be discussed with the chief minister before its implementation.

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