With an apparent eye on the assembly elections, the Delhi government plans to revise the eligibility criteria for the cash-for-food Annashree scheme for the economically deprived sections to include more people.
Linking it to food security, the department of food and supplies has now come up with a revised proposal.
Anyone with an income of less than a lakh per annum; has not been getting ration under the public distribution scheme and is a resident of Delhi for the past three years will be eligible to get a cash-for-food subsidy of Rs.600.
The revised proposal will be tabled in a cabinet meeting next week for a final approval.
The department had earlier tabled a proposal in the cabinet, proposing to include homeless people. But a number of MLAs felt that the ambit of the scheme should be wider and hence it was revised.
“We have to ensure food security for the people of Delhi and we have revised the criteria for the Annashree scheme. Anyone whose income is less than Rs.1 lakh and does not get ration from anywhere else will be eligible. This will ensure more people get the cash benefits,” said a senior Delhi government official.
According to sources, the plan to include people based on their location has been done away with as genuine beneficiaries would have been left out.
“Earlier, we were planning to include people living in various slum clusters. But we decided to make it more inclusive as a number of domestic servants and labourers in servant quarters of posh colonies and they would have been left out,” added the official.
All beneficiaries who enrolled themselves under the scheme will get monetary benefits from April 1, 2012.
So far 97,000 beneficiaries have been identified by the department though the target was two lakh. ‘Vulnerable persons identified through a survey undertaken by Mission Convergence, widows and people referred by the area MLA were earlier eligible for the cash subsidy.
The department had been facing difficulties in tracing people identified in the survey as a number of them had shifted base.