Why is it in the news?
- The central government is working on a plan to launch a One Nation One Ration Card scheme for beneficiaries especially migrant workers to access the Public Distribution System(PDS) from any PDS shop across the country.
- To provide freedom to beneficiaries as they will not be tied to one PDS shop, reduce their dependence on shop owners and curtail corruption.
- The biggest beneficiaries will be migrant workers who move to other states to seek better job opportunities.
About the card
- One nation, one ration card’ scheme has been started in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Haryana, Rajasthan, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Jharkhand and Tripura on January 1 this year.
- The facility will be implemented in all states in the country by June 2020.
- It is an electronic ration card portability scheme to make a single ration card eligible at any fair price shop also known as rations shops across the country.
- Currently, ration card holders can avail their entitlement of subsidised food grains in the place of issue of the card.
- Under the new system, the beneficiaries under the Public Distribution System (PDS) from these states can get their share of rations in any of the 12 states irrespective of where the ration card was originally issued.
- After the scheme gets implemented at the national level, any PDS recipient can use their ration cards at any PDS shop across the country.
- PDS was started in India in 1947 to distribute food items to the poor at subsidised rates. It distributes subsidized food and non-food items to India’s poor.It functions through a network of Fair Price Shops at a subsidized price on a recurring basis
- Later in 2013, PDS was revamped and strengthened with the enactment of the National Food Security Act, (NFSA) 2013
- Under NFSA, the government is obliged to give subsidised foodgrains every month to the beneficiaries identified by each state government on the basis of the economic status of households.
- It was established by the Government of India under Ministry of Consumer Affairs,Food and Public Distribution and are managed jointly by state governments in India.