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Tamil Nadu government launches Centre’s ‘One Nation, One Ration Card’ scheme

The scheme will allow ration cardholders to receive their monthly quota of commodities from any public distribution system (PDS) shop in the State. The scheme will benefit migrant families by providing them rations at their place of residence irrespective of their State of origin.

The PDS shops in the network will ensure biometric authentication of all cardholders via point of sale devices to enable them to avail their monthly entitlement.

A pilot project on intra-State portability was carried out in Thoothukudi and Tirunelveli districts earlier this year ahead of the roll out.The scheme is being implemented in 32 districts acrossTamil Nadu from today. It will be implemented in the remaining 6 districts from the 15th of this month.

Officials said arrangements had been made for additional allotment of five percent of commodities so that any unexpected rush could be managed. The scheme will be fine-tuned based on initial feedback after it is implemented across the State.

However, inter-state migrants will only be eligible for the National Food Security Act (NFSA) mandated quota as per which cardholders are entitled to get rice at Rs 3/kg and wheat at Rs 2/kg. Even as Tamilnadu implements the NFSA,cardholders from the state will continue to be covered under the universal PDS system in vogue over the past four decades extending subsidized commodities to all sections, with no income or social criteria.

The state has 2.09 crore cardholders and has allocated Rs 6,500 crore towards food subsidy and Rs 400 crore towards cooperatives for implementing the PDS this fiscal year.

Over 25 States across the country have already joined the one nation one ration card scheme so far.

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