August 30, 2021 11:07:24 am
The Delhi Food Department has issued an order allowing senior citizens, differently-abled, and those unable to authenticate their biometrics (thumb impression) to nominate others to collect ration on their behalf.
The order, dated August 26, has been issued to ensure that no PDS beneficiary drops out of the safety net due to biometric failures, especially since ration shops in Delhi have implemented the e-POS system under which a beneficiary can collect food grains after thumb or iris authentication.
The Centre had written to the states to implement these steps to address e-POS (electronic point of sales) related grievances.
The department has identified three categories of beneficiaries that will be allowed to avail the facility. According to the order, a family with members all aged above 65 or below 16 and not in a position to visit the shops themselves will be allowed to designate a nominee.
Secondly, if all members of a family are suffering from leprosy, are differently-abled, bedridden, or affected by other diseases and impairments will be allowed to nominate someone to collect ration for them.
The third category covers those families where every member faces biometric authentication failure despite correct Aadhaar seeding. The nominee, meanwhile, will have to have their card registered in the same ration shop as that of the family designating them.
In Delhi, where there are approximately 72 lakh PDS beneficiaries, the e-POS mechanism was rolled out in July. The city has a network of 1,998 fair price shops.
Both in July and August, the monthly ration distribution had a delayed start. In fact, in August, the distribution drive started on August 26, as against the usual 10th of every month.
The disbursal of ration through e-POS devices took place across Delhi during a brief period in early 2018. On April 25, the e-POS operations were suspended by the Delhi government in April 2018 citing irregularities such as misuse of OTPs.
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