The government will soon decide to extend the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY) to provide free ration to the poor from September 30. Food Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey gave this information on Monday. However, he did not say when a decision would be taken in this regard.
Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana was started in March 2020 Pradhan
Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana was launched in March 2020. Under this, about 80 crore beneficiaries included in the National Food Security Act (NFSA) are being given 5 kg of food grains per person per month free of cost. They are given free ration in addition to the subsidized food grains distributed through ration shops. This had helped the poor families a lot during the lockdown implemented due to the Covid-19 epidemic.
The duration of the scheme has been extended several times and now it is valid till 30 September. When asked about going ahead with the PMGKAY scheme, Pandey said, “The government has to decide.” On the sidelines of the Annual General Meeting of Roller Flour Millers Federation of India, the Food Secretary said, “These are big government decisions… The government will decide on this.”
In March, the government extended the PMGKAY scheme for another six months i.e. till September 2022, benefiting 80 crore beneficiaries . The government has spent about Rs 2.60 lakh crore on this scheme till March and another Rs 80,000 crore will be spent by September 2022. This will take the total expenditure under PMGKAY to about Rs 3.40 lakh crore. About 80 crore beneficiaries are covered in this scheme.