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Maharashtra govt to cancel ration cards that have been inactive since May

Card holders who have made no transactions in the past three months will be first asked to explain the lack of transactions.

mumbai Updated: Jul 17, 2018 15:31 IST
HT Correspondent 
HT Correspondent 
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Maharashtra,ration cards
The government expects that the drive, to be held in August, will exclude 8-10% of the current 1.56 crore card holders in the state. (HT File Photo)

The state government has announced its plan to cancel ration cards for households that have not been collecting food grains regularly, with the stated intent of clearing bogus beneficiaries of the food security scheme. The government expects that the drive, to be held in August, will exclude 8-10% of the current 1.56 crore card holders in the state.

Following the linking of ration cards to Aadhaar and the introduction of the biometric system in all 52,000 ration shops, the government introduced e-PDS (public distribution system) on May 1.

“The ration card holder found with no transactions in last three months, since the introduction of e-PDS, will be sent notices asking them to explain their lack of transaction. If they fail to explain it, they will be removed from the list of beneficiaries to make way for new additions. Such cardholders will be tagged as ‘silent rations cards’,” said an official from the food and civil supplies department.

The e-PDS scheme intends to distribute foodgrains at fair prices after biometric verification of the beneficiaries. Even after seeding beneficiaries with Aadhar, some of them have been found to not be in need of fair price foodgrain and hence, have not been collecting it regularly.

More than 90% (1.42 crore) of the ration cards in the state have been linked to Aadhaar. The seeding has helped the department delete duplicate cards that were on the list of beneficiaries for the foodgrain distributed at nominal prices.

Of the 20 lakh ration card-holders in Mumbai and Thane regions, about 1 lakh had been excluded after Aadhaar seeding.

These included card-holders with cards issued at multiple places, cards issued in the names of deceased persons, and those who have moved residences. Further, the government suspects that some ration shop owners siphon off the food grain by conniving with the consumers who do not lift the stock.

First Published: Jul 17, 2018 10:12 IST