To ensure sufficient supply during the lockdown, the government on March 25 decided to increase monthly quota of subsidised foodgrains by 2 kg to 7 kg per person through ration shops for 80 crore beneficiaries.
A decision in this regard was taken by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“The government has decided to provide 7 kg per person of foodgrains to 80 crore people under the Public Distribution System [PDS], which is the world’s largest food security system,” Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar told media after the meeting.
He said the government provides wheat for ₹2 when it costs Food Corporation of India ₹27, and rice for ₹3 when it costs ₹37.
All States have been asked to take foodgrains from the Centre in advance for distribution through the PDS, he added.
Under the National Food Security Act (NFSA), the government is supplying 5 kg of foodgrains per month to over 80 crore people at a highly subsidised price.
The decision to allocate additional foodgrains through the PDS has been taken as State-run Food Corporation of India (FCI) is saddled with wheat and rice stock. With some foodgrains stock kept in open space, the FCI is under pressure to clear stock before monsoon.