The Government of India has transferred Rs. 49,965 crores directly into farmers’ accounts across India through Direct Benefit Transfer. Around Rs. 18.3 Crores transactions under One Nation One Ration Card (ONORC) during the Covid-19 period of April 2020-21 show increased use by the working population & migrants. 

34 States and Union Territories have lifted more than 15 Lakh Metric Tonnes of food grains from FCI depots for May 2021 under PMGKAY-3. Over 1 Lakh Metric Tonnes of food grains were distributed to over 2 Crore beneficiaries by 12 States and Union Territories (UT) so far under PMGKAY-3. Total 26.3 Crore portability transactions have been recorded since the inception of the ONORC scheme. Secretary, Department of Food & Public Distribution Shri. Sudhanshu Pandey briefed media persons about PMGKAY-3 and ONORC Schemes.

Shri. Sudhanshu Pandey today briefed the Press People about PMGKAY-3 and the One Nation One Ration Card strategy via a virtual media conference. Discussing the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY 3), the Secretary reported that the section began executing the PMGKAY-3 for two months interval, i.e., May and June 2021. The same pattern as previously by supplying another quota of free-of-cost foodgrains viz. Rice & Wheat on a scale of 5 Kg per person a month, over and above their regular monthly NFSA entitlements to approximately 80 Crore beneficiaries covered under the two groups of NFSA, specifically Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) and Priority Householders (PHH). The Government of India will bear all the cost, which is over Rs. 26,000 Crore due to food subsidy and Central aid to states and Union Territories.

While briefing the press, Shri Pandey advised that the supply of food grains is going according to the program for May 2021. He explained 15.55 LMT of food grains were raised from FCI depots from the 34 States/UTs for May 2021, and more than 1 Lakh MT was distributed to over 2 Crore beneficiaries by 12 states/UTs. He explained that nearly all States/UTs had signaled an action plan to finish the supply of PMGKAY-III Foodgrains, for the weeks of May and Jun 2021, by the end of June 2021.

He further said that the department is constantly reviewing the strategy and pursuing together with States/UTs to give broad publicity and ensure timely supply of PMGKAY-3 foodgrains transparently through ePoS apparatus after following all security protocols of COVID-19 according to advisories issued. VC meetings have been held together with Food Secretaries and agents of States/UTs by Secretary (DoFPD) on 26th April 2021 and 5th May 2021 to float and examine the progress of foodgrains distribution.

Emphasizing the significance of ‘One Nation One Ration Card‘ (ONORC), Secretary, D/o Food & Public Distribution shared an ambitious program and endeavor to present the nation-wide reliability of ration cards under the National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA). The program intends to enable all migrant beneficiaries to seamlessly access their NFSA foodgrains benefits at any place in the nation. Currently, this system is seamlessly enabled in 32 States/UTs, covering roughly 69 Crore beneficiaries (86% NFSA inhabitants ) in all States/UTs.

Shri. Pandey stated that ONORC has become enabled in 32 States/ UTs. He explained that a yearly average of approximately 1.5 to1.6 Crore potability trades is being listed under ONORC. He advised that more than 26.3 Crore portability trades like intra-state trades have happened throughout these States/UTs since the beginning of the scheme in August 2019. From which nearly 18.3 Crore portability trades are recorded throughout the Covid-19 span of April 2020-21. He further advised that representing the capacity of ONORC strategy to make sure the accessibility to NFSA foodgrains to migrant NFSA beneficiaries throughout the COVID-19 catastrophe, this section has been continuously pursuing with States/UTs via VC meetings/advisories/letters, etc. to execute the program into its full potential by proactively reaching out into the migrant beneficiaries.

These States/UTs are asked to tackle wide-spread promotion and awareness of their ONORC program via 14445 Short Code allotted as One Nation Once Ration Card helpline for grievances and ‘Mera Ration’ Mobile program that the department has recently developed in conjunction with NIC for the advantage of NFSA beneficiaries, especially the migrant NFSA beneficiaries. It is available in nine distinct languages, viz. English, Hindi, Oriya, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, Gujarati. Efforts are made to add more regional languages in the Mera Ration App (available in Google Play).

Shri. Pandey advised that as of 9th May 2021 total of 337.95 LMT wheat was procured, compared to 248.021 LMT wheat which got procured during the past year. He further advised that approximately 34.07 Lakh farmers have benefitted up till now. Pandey explained procurement has begun to undertake through 19,030 purchase centers across India. He stated Haryana and Punjab also shifted from the indirect charge of MSP to lead online transfers in advantage to farmers. Farmers are currently receiving direct gains against the sale of the plants with no delay throughout the nation.

The Secretary advised that from complete DBT charge of Rs. 49,965 Crores up till now moved directly into farmers’ accounts across India due to wheat procurement. He further informed that the Rs. 21,588 Crore in Punjab and roughly Rs. 11,784 Crore in Haryana was moved directly into the farmers’ account.

Shri. Pandey stated that because of the resurgence of Covid-19, together with intending to generate rice and wheat stocks readily available in available, GOI has liberalized Open Market Sale Scheme (Domestic) coverage for the calendar year 2021-22. It’s advised that the sale of food grains under OMSS(D) has begun in non- procuring States, and 2800 MT are sold up to now.

It’s also advised that through the Covid-19 pandemic, approximately 928.77 LMT of foodgrains, 363.89 LMT of WheatWheat, and 564.88 LMT of rice are issued the central pool from 1st April 2020 to 31.3.2021.

While responding to a question regarding the cost rise of olive oils, Pandey stated that the price of olive oils had been tracked closely by the authorities. He said because of Covid-19, some stocks have been stuck at ports because of clearance and evaluations by various agencies. The issue is currently addressed, and shortly, stocks will probably be published on the marketplace, revealing softening influence on petroleum rates.

While answering a second question about sugar subsidy, Pandey advised that comprehensive inspection with ethanol and sugar sector have been moving on. He explained, we’ve attained a blending target of 7.2% this year, and we’re attempting to reach an 8.5% mixing target by the end of the season. He explained that 11 states in the nation already attained the blending goal of 9-10 %, while the remaining states are still working with it.