With the demand for food items increasing from poor families during the lockdown period, the State government has announced that below poverty line (BPL) ration cards are not required for the poor to avail themselves of foodgrains at 20,000-odd PDS ration shops.
The Food and Civil Supplies Department has been asked to provide foodgrains for free to BPL families in the State irrespective of whether they have the BPL cards or not. To take stock of supplies of essential commodities and delivery of services at healthcare facilities, Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa on Saturday chaired a meeting with Ministers, State MPs, MLAs, MLCs, and Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Bengaluru and explained to them the steps taken by the government to fight COVID-19.
A decision to supply essentials to non-ration card poor families was taken following complaints that the poor have not been receiving essentials. A large number non-ration card holding poor families hail from other States, pointed out the official press release.
On Indira Canteens
“We have stopped free supply of food at Indira Canteens because the facility is being misused. But we will restore it if the situation demands,” the Chief Minister said. He said half litre of KMF milk was being supplied to each of the poor families, construction workers, and slum-dwellers in the city.
Addressing a press conference after the meeting, Mr. Yediyurappa said fruits and vegetables were made available through a network of 480 HOPCOMS and mobile HOMCOPMS. On COVID-19 cases, he said all private clinics have been instructed to keep open. About 650 isolation beds are available in government-run hospitals.
Meanwhile, in a tweet, he said: “I request the employees not to cut salaries of their maids, servants, drivers who are not able to work due to practice of social distancing. Your compassionate gesture will support the poor and needy to overcome this hard time.”