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Govt to provide free ration to poor people for one year under food law

Govt to provide free ration to poor people for one year under food law

Cabinet approves distribution of free food grain till December 2023

The Indian government on Friday informed that they will bear expenses of free food grains under under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) till December 2023.

 

The Centre has decided to make distribution of ration under National Food Security Act free for 81.3 crore poor for one year.

Cabinet on Friday approved distribution of free foodgrain for one more year. Commerce minister Piyush Goyal said that the centre will bear the entire cost of ₹2 lakh crore.

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Union minister Piyush Goyal said, “Making ration free under National Food Security Act will cost about ₹2 lakh crore”.

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Under NFSA, also called the food law, the government currently provides 5 kilogram of food grains per person per month at ₹2-3 per kg. The families covered under Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) get 35 kg of food grains per month.

Rice is given to poor persons under NFSA at ₹3 per kg and wheat at ₹2 per kg.

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Briefing reporters about the decision taken by the Union Cabinet, Food Minister Piyush Goyal said the Centre will bear the entire burden of providing free food grains under NFSA

The annual cost to the exchequer is estimated at ₹2 lakh crore.

Meanwhile, the government decided not to extend the free ration scheme Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY), which ends on December 31.

Under PMGKAY, five kilogram of food grains per person per month is provided free to 81.35 crore beneficiaries covered under NFSA.

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This is over and above the monthly distribution of highly subsidised food grains under NFSA.

Government officials described the latest Cabinet decision as a “new year gift for the country’s poor”, saying that over 80 crore people will now get free food grains under NFSA. The beneficiaries will not have to pay a single rupee to get food grains. The Centre will now spend around ₹2 lakh crore per year on this scheme, they added.

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