Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Government has extended distribution of additional 5 kg of rice per head free of cost to beneficiaries of the State Food Security Scheme for four more months in view of the COVID-19 Pandemic, CMO sources said.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has issued a direction in this regard to the officials. As per the directive, each beneficiary of the State Food Security Scheme (SFSS) will get an additional 5 kg of rice from the allotment month of December 2021 to March 2022, in view of the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic situation, a CMO release said.
As many as 2,88,528 families comprising of 9,15,532 members covered under the State Food Security Scheme, will be benefited, it said, adding that for the purpose 4,578 tonnes of rice will be supplied per month totalling 18,310.640 tonnes of rice from the state pool with an expenditure of Rs 68.13 crore from Odisha’s own fund.
This will facilitate beneficiaries enrolled in the State Food Security Scheme to remain at par with beneficiaries under National Food Security Act.
CM Mr.Patnaik on November 21 had written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, requesting him to extend additional allocation of rice under the PMGKAY (Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana) scheme for at least eight months for its free distribution among beneficiaries of National Food Security Program.
He also said the provision of free ration among people at this juncture ensured that “not a single needy and vulnerable person was deprived of food grains during the pandemic”.
Mr.Patnaik urged the Prime Minister to extend the additional allocation of rice till the COVID-19 situation improves since adequate food grains are available at present with the State Government.