IMPHAL, July 18: All state governments are ser to launch the schemes provided under National Food Security Bill 2013 within 180 days from the date of notification on July 5, 2013, said Randeep Singh Surjewala, spokesperson, All India Congress Committee (AICC) during a press conference at the Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee today.
He further said that beneficiaries of under the Act will be provided five kg food grains per person per month at the cost of Rs three per kg of rice, Rs two per kg of wheat, Rs one per kg of millet and coarse grains.
The scheme will cover 75 percent of rural population and 50 percent of urban population i.e nearly 67 percent of India’s population throughout the country, he said.
He stated 2.50 core Antodaya families will be provided 35 kg food grains per month at the rates mentioned and the pregnant women and lactating mothers will be provided free meals during pregnancy and till six months after child birth through the local anganwadi centres and maternity benefit of Rs 6000 in installments.
Children’s who are from six months old to six years will be provided free meals through local anganwadi centres while children in between six to 14 years will also be provided free mid day meal in government schools and further allowed to take back their meals to their respective homes, he said.
Randeep Singh Surjewala further said that equivalent food allowance will also be provided in case of non-supply of entitled food grains.
The aim of the scheme is to eradicate hunger and to provide nutritious food to women and children, he said and continued that the bill seeks to provide five kgs of subsidized food grains per person per month to 82 crore population at a cumulative cost of Rs 1, 24,747 crore by supplying 72.6 million ton of food grains.
The Bill obligates the central government to allocate 100 percent of food grains requirement of state under the right to food, he said and went on to add that central government to also pay the state government expenditure incurred for intrastate movement of food grains, handing of food grains and margin paid to fair price shop dealers.
He lastly noted that bill recognizes the role of women by envisaging that head of the household for purposes of ration card shall be the eldest woman of the family above 18 years of age in place of a male member.