THE STATE government on Thursday increased the number of meals under Shivbhojan Thali, a highly subsidised cooked meal scheme, from one lakh to one-and-a-half lakh. The decision comes in the wake of increased demand, especially from the underprivileged and workers in unorganised sectors left without access to food.
Food and Civil Supplies Minister Chhagan Bhujbal said, “On March 24, when the lockdown was first announced, we started supplying one lakh thalis. Now, the government has increased it to 1.5 lakh thalis.”
Earlier, the government had sanctioned Rs 160 crore for the scheme. Under this subsidised meal, you have to pay Rs 5 for a plate, which contains chapati, rice, dal and vegetables.
The decision will benefit 1.5 lakh people across the state. The increased number of meals will continue till the lockdown duration.
Highly placed sources said, “The scheme is helpful to poor students, workers who don’t have access to ready-made food.” Although the government has made provision for subsidised foodgrains, including free rice under a central scheme, there are some segments who cannot afford to cook meals at home.
Earlier, the government received flak from the opposition BJP, which demanded free distribution of Shivbhojan thalis to all the needy and underprivileged people in the state.
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