Punjab launches Smart Ration Card schemehttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/chandigarh/punjab-launches-smart-ration-card-scheme-5247690/

Punjab launches Smart Ration Card scheme

The biometric-supported electronic system would eradicate anomalies of the conventional public distribution system and decimate the probability of ghost beneficiaries, Punjab Food Supplies Minister Bharat Bhushan Ashu said.

Punjab launches Smart Ration Card scheme
The Smart Ration Card scheme was launched at a state-level function organised at Kisan Vikas Chamber, SAS Nagar.

In order to ensure foolproof transparency and efficiency in the distribution of food grains, Punjab Food Supplies Minister Bharat Bhushan Ashu on Thursday launched statewide distribution of foodgrains under Smart Ration Card Scheme through e-PoS (electronic point of sale) machines. The scheme was launched at a state-level function organised at Kisan Vikas Chamber, SAS Nagar.

The biometric-supported electronic system would eradicate anomalies of the conventional public distribution system and decimate the probability of ghost beneficiaries, said the minister. “A regime of total transparency in Public Distribution System has commenced,” said Ashu.

Fulfilling a long-standing demand of Fair Price Shop (FPS ) owners, the minister also rolled out the distribution of cheques of enhanced honorarium to them. He informed that the government has enhanced the margin money/commission of wheat distribution FPS owners from existing Rs 25 to Rs 50 per quintal whereby a payment of Rs 40 crore would be made to the 16000 FPS owners in the state. He further stated that all the other demands raised by FPS owners were also being considered.

Reiterating government’s firm commitment to bring benefit of government schemes till the last man standing, the minister pointed out that shifting to Aadhar-linked identification and electronic distribution coupled with end-to-end computerisation would revolutionise the system of distribution of food grains across the state.

Gurdaspur MP Sunil Jakhar congratulated the depot holders and stated supply of sugar, tea leaves and pulses at subsidised rates would be soon implemented which would be a major price check mechanism. He said that the enhancement in honorarium and wheat distribution through e-POS technology was another major step to streamline the distribution system.

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