VIJAYAWADA: Bringing a major change in the Public Distribution System (PDS) in the State, Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy will be inaugurating the door delivery of ration supplies scheme and flagging off 2,500 mobile dispensing units for three districts (door delivery vehicles) at Benz Circle in Vijayawada on Thursday. 

Door delivery of ration is one of the promises made by Jagan Mohan Reddy during his 3,648 km padayatra before the 2019 elections during which he witnessed elderly and differently-abled people waiting in long queues to get the ration supplies, which were of poor quality. After coming to power, the Chief Minister has taken the initiative to provide quality rice at the doorstep of the ration card holders. 

During the previous regime, there were many irregularities in the PDS, including improper delivery of goods and black marketing, which eventually caused inconvenience to the public, officials said. To resolve this, the YSRC government has decided to deliver quality rice at their doorstep of card holders, by spending an additional amount of Rs 830 crore per annum.

In the earlier PDS, the percentage of husk and coloured grains were high and a majority of beneficiaries rejected it. To resolve the issue, the government has decided to provide better quality swarna variety rice to the card holders. The Civil Supplies Department has made drastic changes in the procurement of rice by reducing the husk and broken rice to a great extent. For the first time, a quality sortex rice is being given to the cardholders, with zero per cent stones and less than one per cent dyed or damaged grains. 

Using the volunteer system, quality rice will be distributed at the doorstep of the cardholders after taking their fingerprints. The ration will be supplied in reusable bags. Every bag of rice will be sealed and tagged with a unique code, leaving zero scope for adulteration. Global Positioning System (GPS) is fitted with all the vehicles and card holders will be able to know the delivery details in real-time through the mobile app. Each vehicle has to deliver the goods for at least 18 days per month. 

Nearly 9,260 vehicles were purchased at a cost of Rs 539 crore for door delivering the ration supplies and these vehicles were provided by the government at 60 per cent subsidy to eligible beneficiaries through various corporations under the Employment Guarantee Scheme. 

The value of each vehicle is Rs 5.81 lakh out of which Rs 3,48,600 was provided as subsidy from various corporations. In all, 700 vehicles were provided from ST Corporation, 2,300 vehicles from SC Corporation, 3,800 from BC Corporation, 660 from Minorities Corporation, 1,800 vehicles from EWEB Corporation to unemployed youth.

The State government is also giving ration cards to eligible people across the State in just 10 days from the date of applying in five categories — new ration card, division of a ration card, adding members to a rice card, removing members from a rice card and surrendering the rice card. From June 2020 to date, 4,93,422 new ration cards were issued, people were added in 17,07,928 new rice cards, 4,38,013 rice cards were divided, totalling 26,39,363 rice cards.

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