Fair price shops are a great support, especially for the poor, as they rely on them for their monthly ration, including wheat, rice and kerosene. But, unfortunately, the scene in the Sangam city is different.
A sizeable section of the poor are struggling to get ration from these government ration shops due to their frequent closure. Moreover, the shop owners are allegedly misleading them about the availability and distribution of ration and the timings of the shop.
Suman, a mother of two, and resident of Attarsuiya locality said for the past few months she had failed to get her monthly ration on a regular basis due to these very reasons. A maidservant, Suman said that for the past many weeks she was often finding her ration shop closed, particularly on Sundays.
“This often affects my monthly budget as I fail to purchase the necessary supplies from the ration shops and have to depend upon the open market for essentials like wheat, rice and kerosene,” she said.
Lamenting such practices by some shop owners, Rakesh Bharitya, a resident of Swaraj Nagar locality said he often failed to get right information about the availability of ration from the shop owner. “As a result, I often fail to get ration,” he added. He alleged that majority of fair price shop owners sold the ration in open market after misguiding consumers.
As per the government orders, fair price shops should be opened every Sunday and Thursday; besides there should be a notice board put up at the shop informing people about the availability of ration and its price fixed by the government. But, neither of these orders are being followed by shop owners in different parts of the city including Allahpur, Daraganj and Naya Purwa, among others.
District supply officer (DSO) Vijay Shankar Pandey remained unavailable for comments, despite repeated efforts to contact him. ADM (supply) Prem Shankar assured that he would look into the matter and urged complainants to submit their complaints at the civil supplies office in the collectorate, so that action could be initiated against the guilty fair price shop owners.