Coupon system to be streamlined in three months, says Khader

4:03 PM, Friday, August 12th, 2016
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U-T-KhaderMysuru: Food and Civil Supplies Minister U T Khader said that the coupon system for the distribution of ration to card holders is working well and by three months the whole system will be streamlined.

He was speaking to reporters, before holding a progress review meeting of the department with the officials at the deputy commissioner’s office here on Thursday.

“The state government’s motive is to provide ration cards to all citizens as per their financial status. Unscientific norms in issuing ration cards have been dropped. In the Cabinet meeting, the criterion for availing BPL card has been simplified and only four riders have been listed in place of 14. Even the process of applying and availing ration cards has been eased. Anybody with Aadhaar card can now apply for a ration card. The government is also thinking of doing away with the classification of BPL and APL and, issue ration cards on the basis of ‘priority’ and ‘non-priority’ classification of people,” he said.

“In future, a person with an Aadhaar card can apply for a ration card anywhere in the state. People can apply in gram panchayat offices and online from anywhere. The model of the ration cards has also been changed on the lines of the Aadhaar card and a barcode with all necessary information has been included. The coupon system has been introduced to bring in transparency and portability is provided to bring a healthy competition among the fair price shop owners,” he said.

“Under portability, the card holders can procure their coupons from any kiosk and buy their ration from any shop within their respective taluk limits. To enhance the income of fair price shop owners, the government is contemplating an increase in the margin for the commodities they handle. The shop owners can also diversify into other suitable businesses to increase their income. More shops will be granted to women groups, SHGs, GPs, cooperative societies, etc, to give more visibility. Fair price shops have been established for the benefit of people and not for the profit of the shop owners. However, a shop which has a jurisdiction of over 800 cards can easily earn up to Rs 15,000,” Khader said.

Pointing out at low turnout to avail coupons, the minister said, “The fair price shops have been directed to identify people who are not able to come out of their houses to avail either the coupons or the ration. They will be provided provisons without coupons for six months. Mobile coupon issuing machines have been envisaged for the future.”

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