Mangaluru, Jan 17, 2017 : The state government is contemplating introducing optional cash coupon instead of food grains coupons for BPL ration card holders in Karnataka. A proposal mooted by department of food, civil supplies and consumer affairs in this regard is awaiting the nod from the government.
Minister for food, civil supplies and consumer affairs U T Khader said BPL ration card holders could be provided the option of buying food grains from selected shops using the cash coupon. "Such coupon generated on request from the ration card holders can be utilised at identified shops only," Khader said.
It is a pilot project on anvil and we have not finalized the proposal. We are working on preparing elaborate plans to implement the project, which will also help department to prevent misuse of PDS system," Khader said, adding that it will be optional and not compulsory for BPL card holders to opt for the cash coupons.
The department has plans to convert fair price shops (FPS) in the state into ’Seva Kendras’ by introducing various ration card related services at those centres. In the first phase, provisions will be made for all fair price shops to generate food grains coupons for BPL card holders. Fair price shop dealers will be given rights to issue food grains coupons directly based on software that will scan biometric thumb impression of ration card holders.
At present, ration card holders are made to obtain food grains coupon either through SMS or from gram panchayats and Mangaluru One centres. Under the new system BPL ration card holders may obtain coupon and buy food grains directly from fair price shops. While the department will provide the software, fair price shops will have to procure computer, printer and biometric machine, Khader said adding people also will be able to insert corrections in ration cards through fair price shops.
The department recently has made provisions for people in the APL category to submit applications for new ration cards online. This service will be brought under the ambit of Sakala Scheme of the government.