According to local sources, it has been reported that The All India Ration Dealers’ Association has alleged that the Mr Oommen Chandy Government’s move to give free rice to 20 lakh below the poverty line (BPL) families from April 1 will throw the public distribution system (PDS) into disorder. The decision was taken at the fag end of the government’s tenure with an eye on the upcoming polls. This decision of free rice distribution will deprive a large number of families of their share of rice, as revealed by association general secretary Mr Babychen Mukkadan and State president Mr K.R. Aravindakshan informed at a press conference.
Further, it was also narrated that the 20 lakh families had been selected based on an 18-year-old list. Of these, 6 lakh were ineligible. As many as 16 lakh families which were included in the list by panchayats following a survey and had been given ration cards with a seal of ‘BPL family’ were waiting to be included in the list, as it has been claimed . Moreover, it has also been alleged that the government was keeping mum on how much funds were required for the scheme and where the money would come from.
Furthermore, in this matter it has been stated that the State had been criticised in Parliament by Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi for failing to implement the food security Act. The State should have been the first to implement it as it has been told by Mr K.V. Thomas who had introduced it in Parliament and got the Act passed.