Roman Saini is teaching live on Unacademy Plus
Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping, issues of buffer stocks and food security Lesson 3
In this Lesson o Limitations of PDS
Corrupt dealers are replacing good supplies received from the FCI with inferior stock and sell FCI stock in the black market The ration shop owners have been found to create large number of bogus cards to sell food grains in the open market Government does not have clear norms specifying individual elements of food security like emergency, price stabilisation, food security reserve and TPDS The norms do not specify the maximum stock that should be maintained in the central pool for each of the above component . .
CAG has found that states had not completed the process of identifying beneficiaries Identification of households for PDS facility is highly irregular and diverse in various states Regional allocation and coverage of PDS is unsatisfactory . .
Poor supervision and lack of accountability has encouraged middlemen who consume resources meant for the poor and needy . There is also no clarity as to which families should be included in the belovw the poverty line list and which are not This has resulted in poor being excluded and the ineligible get several cards Awareness about the presence of the PDS among the poverty-ridden people has been low . .
PDS is provided to ration card holders only. Ration cards are given on the basis of residential proof Many BPL families are not able to acquire ration cards because they are seasonal migrant workers or because they live in illegal slums Many people even mortgage their ration cards for money Limited information has discouraged BPL families from registering for new cards Increased illegal creation of cards by rich families to ensure maximum benefit for the family members. * * .
Leakages refer to loss of food grains that do not reaching intended beneficiaries According to 2011 data, leakages in PDS were estimated to be 46.7% Leakages were due to pilferage during transportation of food grains But leakages were also due to diversion at fair price shops to non-beneficiaries and exclusion of entitled beneficiaries from the list FCI reforms have long been pending Sometimes there is miscommunication during coordination between states and center . . . .
As of 2017, the total storage capacity in the country is 788 lakh tonnes, of which 354 lakh tonnes is with the FCI and 424 lakh tonnes is with the state agencies The CAG found that the available storage capacity in states was inadequate for the allocated quantity of food grains By 2015, of the 233 godowns sanctioned for construction in Maharashtra, only 93 had been completed In 4 of the last 5 years, the stock of food grains with the centre had been higher than the storage capacity available with Food Corporation of India . . e .
Consumers have complained of receiving inferior quality food grains in ration shops Food grains contain alien substances such as pebbles, some are even adulterated Poor quality of food may impact the willingness of people to buy food through PDS shops as it may have an adverse impact on their health Even though regular surveillance, inspection and random sampling of all food items is undertaken by State Food Safety Officers, separate data for food grains distributed under PDS is unavailable Thus it may be difficult to ascertain whether these food items meet the prescribed quality and safety standards * * . *
There is an imbalance in the availability of storage capacity across regions especially in Rajasthan and Maharashtra which are huge consumers of PDS ration 64% of the total storage capacity is concentrated in Punjab, Haryana, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh .