One Nation One Ration Card
This Blog is written by Aadish Jain from Symbiosis Law School, Noida. Edited by Saumya Tripathi.
The scheme “One Nation-One Ration Card” was announced by the Food and Public Distribution Minister Mr. Ram Vilas Paswan as NDA government ambitious project on 20 January 2020 to be rolled out in the whole India from 1 June 2020 but as we all know the whole world is going through the pandemic situation of Covid-19 the process has been slowed and all the work has been delayed but this situation made it unavoidable.
Recently the news about “One Nation-One Ration Card” has been flowed as three more states namely Odisha, Sikkim and Mizoram have been included in the scheme and as far now total of 20 States and Union Territories has joined the Scheme said the Food and Public Distribution Minister. Further he announced that three more states Uttarakhand, Nagaland and Manipur will be also added to the National Scheme.
As of now the scheme has been implemented across the 20 states with the flagship of the Prime Minister Modi’s Government and the central government is also targeting to include the entire country in this national scheme by 31 March 2021.
According to the statistics under the National Food Securities Act, 2018 in the country there are 81 crore people who are qualified for purchase of subsidized food grains like coarse grain at ₹1/Kg, wheat at ₹2/Kg and Rice at ₹3/Kg from their assigned Fair Price Shops(FPS) of the Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS). And at this point of time 23 crore ration cards has been issued which makes nearly 80 crore beneficiaries of NFSA,2013 in all States and UTs.
The main objective of the scheme “One Nation-One Ration Card” is to give the portability across the country to the ration cards holders under the NFSA. So by this development the Rations Card holders will be able to get their food from any Fair Price Shop (FPS) across the country by identifying the beneficiary from biometric identification on electronic point of sale (ePos) which were installed at every Fair Price Shop across the country.
For a better understanding in a simple way we can tell that if any person is living in the district Khargone of the Madhya Pradesh and for the employment he moved to the Delhi. So, according to previous act the person now is not entitled to purchase the subsidized food from the nearby PDS shop in Delhi as he was assigned for the Khargone but as the scheme “One nation One Ration Card” will come in force the beneficiary will be able to buy the food from the any PDS shop across the country.
The scheme will help the beneficiaries intra as well as inter states. It will be worked by the Integrated Management of Public Distribution System (IM-PDS) entryway (http://www.impds.nic.in/) gives the innovative stage to the between state transportability of apportion cards, empowering a transient labour to purchase food grains from any FPS the nation over, the other gateway (annavitran.nic.in) has the information of dissemination of food grains through E-PoS gadgets inside a state.
The Annavitran entryway empowers a vagrant laborer or his family to profit the advantages of PDS outside their region however inside their state. While an individual can get a lot of foodgrains according to her qualification under the NFSA, any place she is based, the remainder of her relatives can buy sponsored foodgrains from their apportion vendor back home.
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE DEVELOPMENT
We all know that hunger is most shared adversary of us all. So as to vanquish it, we have to have food which is the fundamental requirement for us all. As indicated by FAO of UN, ‘food security’ is a circumstance when all individuals consistently have adequate food to meet their dietary and nourishing needs to lead a solid and gainful life. The food ought to likewise be reasonable. The Indian Government, subsequent to understanding that wide-spread of poverty is a significant danger to food security, by introducing this scheme “One Nation One Ration Card” will ensure and guarantees food to poor people and the most unfortunate of poor people. It is a change in perspective from government assistance-based way to deal with right base methodology as these food grains at the subsidized cost are given as lawful privilege for example right to food. India is one such country where there are 84 million people are there who are below the poverty line. Due to low income and unemployment almost 60% of the population of the country cannot afford the food of sold at the stores. It’s almost of two third of the Indian population has been covered under it. These are the people who can consume only subsidized food which the government is providing.
The Act also provides accommodate food and wholesome in the human life cycle approach by guaranteeing access to sufficient amount of value food at moderate costs to carry on with an existence with respect. For a nation like India where practically 40% of the kids are undernourished, such an Act would get food security for satisfying local basic needs. This Act additionally means to help lactating mothers, pregnant ladies and kids.
The Act has made an impact as it was implemented and make a significant progress under it by the implementation of the act the procurement of the grains directly from the farmers has abolish the levy system and benefitting the farmers which has increase the procurement in sates North and North-Eastern States which help to develop that area. Apart from that the standard has been set up for the staple like rice, milk, wheat and other necessary food items to increase the nutrition in the diet.
All the norms has been revised under the act it also include the buffer norms which is called food grain stocking norms now which tells that the farmers has to release some amount of grains monthly under the act so that it can used the time of emergency just like now in Covid-19 or the crop failure or any disaster. Also, the whole system has been digitalized which helps the delete the duplication of the ration card and the ensure the right targets to get the subsidized food. Automation of the fair price which helps them to brings the transparency in the system of distributing the ration to the beneficiaries under the Act. The Act come in highlight when the “Integrated management of PDS” (IM-PDS) scheme has come in 2020 under which the ration card holder is provided with the nation-wide portability ration card from which they can take the ration from all over the country. The new godowns has been also built to increase the storage capacity. Food grain allocation has also ensured the standards of the nutrition in the institutions to maintain the good health of the country.
The Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) always introduce the new scheme by seeing all its circumstances under it. So, TPDS coverages almost 50% of the urban population and 75% of the rural population which tells that 5Kg per mouth and poor of the poorest will get 35 Kg of food per household per month under the scheme Antodaya Ann Yojna (AAY). Apart from the nation coverage it also shows the state wise coverage of the PDS. From time to time the Act has been revised on regular basis the subsidized price of the good has been very low from the commencement of the Act the food grains like Coarse grains, wheat and rice has been ₹1/₹2/₹3 per Kg has been provided to the people who has entitled to get the subsidized food by identifying under the Act.
The Act has been more beneficiary to the women and children in other word we can tell that it take the extra care of the women and children the act tells that the children below the age of 14 years, the pregnant women and lactating women the proper nutritionist diet has been prescribed by the Integrated Child Development Service (ICDS) to keep them healthy and many more other norms has been set by the act for the betterment of the society’s women and children. Apart from the food the pregnant women and lactating women also get the financial benefits as a maternity benefit of ₹6000 under the Act. The Act also empower the women as to acquire the ration card the eldest women of the household of age 18 or above must be the head of the household.
All the grievances redressal regarding the it has been available at the District and the states level and also there is social audits and vigilance committee has been set up for the transparency and the accountability in the system. And in the case if the system was unable compete its objective to supply of food grains then the food security allowance has to be provided to beneficiaries. And if any public servant fails to do his job from his own end then the penalty has been imposed upon him according to the provision given in the act.
Millions of beneficiaries were denied their food grain privilege for over a year because of the inability of State governments to recognize the beneficiary rapidly. The usage was deferred for over a year from the hour of its execution. On the name of the employment The NFSA (National Food Security Act) just gives occasional business. It recruits enormous scope workers during obtainment seasons and when they are not required during off season of year they get no wages or the minimum wages. These workers get not exactly least wages and are not ensured by any government managed savings conspire. It is the administration’s duty to furnish these workers with different sorts of work during slow times of year and they ought to be ensured by government disability conspire. We all know how the India is still male dominating country so as the act tells the things about women empowerment are only in the papers of the provision as in reality all the decision has been made by the men also the women are just a proxy to avail the benefits which are provided to them. Also, on the other hand the central government has made the provision regarding the pregnant and lactating mother that they should be provide the hot meals at the nearest anganwadis and a financial benefit of ₹6000. But these scheme under the act was not universal as it was confined to the places and the government should take a necessary step to make it universal as all the people who are in need of it can get the benefits from it.
The other facts come out of data after analysing it that the Food Security Models of the conditions of Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu are better than NFSA. Starting at 2012, Tamil Nadu ended 60% of poverty gap and Chhattisgarh cleared out 40% of poverty gap, because of verifiable and exceptional exchanges through PDS. Tamil Nadu Government prevailing in food security on account of its proficient PDS. In 2011, when this began, Tamil Nadu Government circulated free rice to all rice card and other proportion at sponsored rates. It is a triumph as a result of the low measure of spillage and the Fair Price Shops are very much observed. Their principle procedures are Universal PDS, a value adjustment support for obtainment of fundamental products and dissemination of basic items at a sponsored rate. Most of the time what happens that there is heavy leakages like 40% to 50% of leakage in the PDS system of the food grain which directly goes to the open market to sale in higher price. So these type of the activities should be monitored and actions should be taken so that system can work more effectively.
Devolution of duties to the States up to 10% doesn’t imply that it is advantageous to the states. The middle diminished the quantity of Centrally Sponsored Schemes from 66 to 30 by adjusting the subsidizing design. This implies the State Governments have an extra consumption of 40%. The Centre ought not overweight the states this way, and rather, should bolster them with more assets.
The arrangement of ‘one country, one apportion card’ is a hypothetically a decent one however there is no affirmation on the off chance that it will work 100%. Usage of it is an unavoidable issue. Especially during the hours of pandemic when lockdown is actualized, there is less creation of food grains. It can’t be denied that the vagrant workers are in desperate need of food grains at the same time, the inquiry is if the state has the ability to give food grains to proportion card holders from different states?
And even more the one thing should be noticed that the fundamental apportion dispersed are rice, wheat and dals. But the pulses which have the major supplement esteems of nutrition are not given significance. There ought to be circulation of more pulses for the health security and for the health benefits.
Despite of all these economic performances and implementing the schemes and making the various development still India is largest home of hunger people in the world. It should be noted that the Food Security Bill has been a landmark Bill of all in the sector of food and distribution but this is not enough then the National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA) the act came up many ambitious projects and schemes which might help the country come up with the hunger problem and also the economic health and one such scheme is “One Nation-One Ration Card”. But the total success of the scheme of depends upon its implementation. Another big reason of these unsuccessful implementation of these schemes and packages were the leakage in the system which has to be necessarily changed.
But on the other hand we all know that currently the whole world is struggling from the pandemic situation of Covid-19 which made the scheme of “One Nation-One Ration Card” unavoidable as the beneficiaries are using the intra state rations cards portability for accruing the food form intra state Fair Price Shops (FPS) the places where they have been during these nation-wide lockdown. So all we need to work together, fight together against these hunger and government should see all the loopholes in the system and take the preventive actions and necessary steps so that the every NFSA scheme can be its success and the problem of the hunger in the country came to an end.