What is the News?
The government is distributing food grains under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana. According to the Department of Food and Public Distribution, one lakh tonnes of food grains have been distributed so far under the new phase of the Yojana.
About Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana(PMGKAY):
- PMGKAY was first announced in 2020 as a part of the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package(PMGKP). It aims to help the poor to fight the battle against Covid-19.
- Aim: The aim of the scheme is to provide each person, who is covered under the National Food Security Act(NFSA), with an additional 5 kg of grains (wheat or rice) for free. This is given over and above their monthly entitlement
- Duration of the Scheme: The scheme was announced in 2020 for three months till July 2020. Later it was extended till November 2020.
- However, the scheme is functional once again. Under this phase, around 80 crore beneficiaries would be covered for the months of May and June 2021.
Note: The new phase of the PMGKAY Scheme does not provide free-of-cost 1 kg pulses per month to each household covered under the NFSA. This one of the important components available in the earlier phase of the program.
Performance of the PMGKAY scheme till now:
- The government allotted a total monthly allocation (for May) of 40 lakh metric tonnes (MT) under the PMGKAY. Of these one lakh, tonnes have been distributed so far.
- Thirteen States and union territories have started distribution under the PMGKAY Scheme.
- In the first 10 days, PMGKAY grains have reached 2.03 crore
- Further, 15 lakh MT has been lifted by states from the Food Corporation of India’s stock for distribution.
Petition in Supreme Court:
- Despite the government intervention, a petition has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking a resumption of the 2020 scheme. In 2020 the government provided food grains to those without ration cards also.
- Note: The Government has ruled out the possibility of a similar scheme in 2021.
- The petitioners have also asked for the payment of minimum wages as cash transfers and appropriate transport facilities for migrant workers.
Source: The Hindu