ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Foodgrains : Distribution Woes

Distribution Woes The targeted public distribution system (TPDS) was launched in 1997 in order to make up for the many lacunae in the PDS programme in terms of reaching food to the poorest and the most needy. Under the TPDS, state governments were required to design and implement a system of identifying the poor and ensuring distribution of foodgrains to them in a transparent manner. TPDS was initially aimed to cover 6 crore families for whom 72 lakh tonnes of foodgrains were to be allocated annually. The per family allocation for the belowpoverty- line (BPL) population was gradually increased from 10 kg per month to the present 35 kg per month. Yet, according to a recent report of the standing committee of parliament attached to the ministry of consumer affairs, food and public distribution, offtake of wheat and rice under the PDS has been consistently way below allocations year after year. The offtake in 2001-02 was below 50 per cent of allocation, which was more or less the situation in the earlier years too.

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