The Centre will provide an additional 19.80 lakh tonnes of subsidised foodgrains to 174 backward districts in 27 States and Union Territories.
Of this, 12.21 lakh tonnes will be made available for the Below the Poverty Line (BPL) population and 7.59 lakh tonnes, for Antyodaya Anna Yojna (AAY) beneficiaries under the Targeted Public Distribution System.
The allocation, being made as per the orders of the Supreme Court, which is hearing a Public Interest Litigation petition on the PDS, will be for a year. The decision has been approved by Chairman of the Empowered Group of Ministers on Food Pranab Mukherjee.
BPL wheat will be sold at Rs.4.15 a kg and rice at Rs.5.65. AAY beneficiaries will get them at Rs.2 and 3. The outgo of subsidy on this count will be about Rs.2,500 crore. The food subsidy for the fiscal is estimated at about Rs.70,000 crore.
The additional outgo of 19.80 lakh tonnes will bring down the food stocks, which hover around 560 lakh tonnes. The buffer norm for October 1 is 212 lakh tonnes. This includes a strategy food security reserve of 30 lakh tonnes of wheat and 20 lakh tonnes of rice.