The Tripura government has identified over 60,000 fake ration cards in a digitization drive of Public Distribution System (PDS), Law Minister Ratan Lal Nath said late Wednesday. Since the incumbent BJP-IPFT government assumed office on March 9, this year, they have largely focused on digitization and e-government services as a part of their move to end corruption and bring accountability in public services. Speaking to reporters at the secretariat, Nath said, “the Public Distribution System (PDS) is being digitized and more than 60,000 fake ration cards were identified in which around 3 lakh beneficiaries were registered.”
“We believe in transparency and accountability (in governance). We conducted a verification and found that 62,340 ration cards and 2,80,776 PDS consumers are fake”, he added.
The state food department had 9,62,046 ration cards registered in total during the erstwhile Left Front government. However, the incumbent state government found only 8,99,706 genuine cards. The ministry further informed that the list of beneficiaries also came down to 36,59,501 from 39,40,277.
With over thirty social security schemes operational in Tripura, Nath said that many ‘fake’ beneficiaries were busted in different social security schemes.
Shortly after coming to power, the Biplab Deb government announced to withhold the process of including new candidates in the list of social security beneficiaries. Referring to the issue, law minister Nath said 4.19 lakh beneficiaries were registered with the state government for social security pensions. Among them 4.17 lakh beneficiaries drew benefits in May, 4.16 lakh beneficiaries drew benefits in June and 4.14 lakh beneficiaries drew benefits in July.
Before coming to power in February, this year, BJP promised to raise social security pension benefits from Rs 700 to Rs 2,000 per month.
“We promised to hike social security pension benefits in our Vision Document. At the same time, we are also trying to identify fake beneficiaries”, Nath told reporters.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines