The central government decision to issue ration cards in the name of senior most female member of a family instead of a male member has not only drawn criticism from male populace of Hamirpur district, but even women are deploring the move.
It is for the second time in the span of three months that ration cards are being revised here to link it with Aadhar cards.
The directions of the Centre to make changes in ration cards came under strong criticism at various gram sabhas of the district.
At Bela gram panchayat, people, especially women, strongly objected to the fresh orders and wanted the old system to continue.
Opposing the Centre's move, people at Jalari gram panchayat alleged that the new system will further widen the existing gulf between male and female populace, besides it has potential to create rift into the families.
According to the existing rule, ration cards are issued in the name of the head of the family irrespective of their gender, while the names of other family members are mentioned on the card.
When contacted, district food and supplies officer Pratap Thakur said the new system was ordered by the central government and the state government was only enforcing the directions, as the state government would be implementing the Food Security Act of the Centre shortly.
However, he refused to divulge further details of the new scheme, stating that he was not authorised to speak on the issue.
Meanwhile, lamenting the new criterion for the issuance of ration cards, people of the district said how the Centre would link the Aadhar-based ration cards with LPG connections when most of the LPG connections were in name of male head of families.
However, asking the central and the state governments to clarify the logic behind making new ration cards when old cards were made recently, Pritam Chand said the way new cards were being made, it would further complicate the situation and create tension in the families.