D.K. Kishan Rao
Some women have been staging an indefinite dharna since Tuesday
‘We have been deprived of foodgrains supply for the past six months’
‘1.22 lakh fresh ration cards were issued in the district in January’
Raichur: A group of women, including Devadasis from all the five taluks in the district, have been staging an indefinite dharna since Tuesday demanding that the Government issue ration cards to all eligible families and ensure proper functioning of fair price shops in the district. The dharna has been called by the Navajeevan Mahila Okkuta.
Mahadevamma and Narasamma from Atkoor village of Raichur taluk, two among the many poor women identified under the Antyodaya scheme and below the poverty line (BPL) groups in the district, allege that they have been deprived of foodgrains owing to the “indifferent attitude” of the State Government in streamlining the Public Distribution System (PDS) in the district.
They said that except allotment of houses under the Ashraya scheme and 1.25 acres of land to each of them in Atkoor village, the Government had not initiated action to cover them under food security.
They claimed that they had been deprived of foodgrains supply for the past six months as the authorities concerned had failed to issue them fresh ration cards after they returned the old ration cards last year.
Many activists complained that there was no proper distribution of ration cards to the families identified under BPL and the Antyodaya scheme. While many ration shops were not functioning properly, even the foodgrains supplied through the PDS were insufficient, they said, as the monthly supply in case of BPL had been restricted to 4 kg of rice and 3 kg of wheat to a family and in case of Antyodaya scheme it was restricted to 29 kg of rice and 6 kg of wheat.
Demanding the allotment of ration cards to all eligible families in the district, they urged the Government to initiate action to streamline the PDS ensuring the proper functioning of fair price shops and allocate 35 kg of foodgrains a month to all the ration cardholders, both in respect of BPL and Antyodaya beneficiaries in compliance with the Supreme Court guidelines.
According to D.P. Chawan, Deputy Director of the Department of Food and Civil Supply here, the department has issued 1.22 lakh fresh ration cards, including 1.18 lakh under BPL, in the district during January. The issue of ration cards under the Antyodaya scheme had been suspended since 2005 according to the guidelines issued by the Union Government.
However, fresh ration cards will be issued to the affected BPL families in the district after verification of their applications through the Nemmadi Kendras in the respective hoblis.