CPI(M) to organise dharna at Civil Supplies office

The Public Distribution System is slowly collapsing with the number of white ration cards coming down along with the quantum of kerosene or other essential goods sold through the ration shops in Krishna district.

Acute problem

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) State Committee member Ch. Babu Rao, at a press conference here on Saturday, announced that a dharna would be staged in front of the Assistant Civil Supplies Officer's office, at Taluka Office on Monday. He said that the agitation would continue if their demand for sanction of ration cards to all eligible was not met immediately.

Detailing the acute problem of availability of essential good to the vast majority of the urban poor in Vijayawada, Mr. Babu Rao said that the State Government had been waiting for a minister or an MLA to come and formally give the ration cards of Deepam Connections to the poor not bothering about the need for urgency in granting them the access to essential goods at subsidised prices.

State Government had taken 47,949 applications for white ration cards during Ratchabanda programme in January and declared 37,379 eligible, but even they had not been issued with the cards nine months later, he lamented. “The District Administration had set up five IRIS obtaining DPL centres in the city, but closed down all of them, without accelerating the process of issuing ration cards,” he observed.

Now Adhar Cards are being linked to white cards, but with no cards available to about 30 per cent of the eligible poor population, all of them were suffering on several fronts, Mr. Babu explained. He said that for a 11.5 lakh population in the corporation area 1,79,265 white ration cards were issued covering 5,91,056 population. The number of cards in March 2010 were 1,92,957 white cards, which had come down to 1,79,265 now.

The total amount of kerosene being supplied had come down from 7.44 lakh litres in 2009 to 3.74 lakh litres in 2011 and those having one gas cylinder were forced to get only one litre of kerosene and buy additional need at Rs.33 a litre from open market, Mr. Babu Rao said. About 7,000 persons were identified as eligible for Deepam connections and 3,000 sanctioned, but none of them given to beneficiaries, said party city secretary D. Kasinath and member Ch. Joginath.

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