Harleen Kaur Grewal
Jalandhar, February 223, 2021: The Prime Minister’s welfare scheme started for the poor and needy families in Punjab has been discontinued. This will affect about 32 lakh families of Punjab. Under this scheme, families living below the poverty line were given free ration. The scheme was introduced to provide free ration to poor families due to the lockdown/curfew imposed due to the Corona pandemic. Under the scheme, five kilograms of wheat and one kilogram of pulses per card were issued per member. At the same time, now needy families are forced to visit the depot to get free rations.
The economic condition of poor families in Punjab had weakened due to the pandemic. As a result, labor migrated in a panic from all the districts of Punjab and was returning to their native homes. To prevent this, the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana was launched in the state. The scheme, which started in April last year, has been discontinued. However, according to Rajneesh Kumari, deputy director of the Food and Supplies Department, the scheme was started due to the lockdown, which has stopped after the situation became normal. At the same time, the ration receiving families continue to face problems.
The scheme was implemented on blue cards only
Instead of making a separate arrangement for the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana was implemented only on cards made under the flour-dal scheme already being run in Punjab. Only those cards that were uploaded on the portal were included in the scheme. Their number is close to 32 lakhs.
This was the Prime Minister’s welfare scheme
Under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, five kilograms of wheat and one kilogram of pulses per card were given per member. For example, the card on which four members are registered. Twenty kilos of wheat and one kilo of pulses per month were issued on that card. This ration was distributed in the presence of the Inspector of the Department through the depot holder.
Committees made at the district level were also disbanded
Committees were also constituted to maintain transparency in the work of making the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana accessible to deserving people. Committees were made under the chairmanship of the ward councilor and included social workers, teachers, and area heads, which dissolved as soon as the plan closed.
The scheme was launched in the lockdown, the flour-dal scheme will continue
In this regard, Rajneesh Kumari, deputy director of the Department of Food and Civil Supplies, says that the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana was launched for poor families amidst the closed businesses due to the lockdown. The quota has not been released under this scheme after the situation becomes normal. Therefore, under the flour-dal scheme, poor families will continue to be given a quota of wheat at the rate of two rupees per kg.