The Jammu and Kashmir Cabinet gave concurrence to the Government of India’s proposal for implementation of National Food Security Act (NFSA) in the State on November 24 this year. The State Cabinet, in its meeting, convened on 2 December 2015 approved implementation of the Act in Jammu and Kashmir. Pertinently, after being passed by the Parliament, Government of India notified the National Food Security Act- 2013 on 10 September 2013 for implementation across the country.
Here are some important points you need to know about the Act in Jammu and Kashmir: –
- NFSA is to be implemented throughout the State from 1 February 2016.
- 119.13 lac souls (95% population) in the State shall be covered under subsidized rations.
- Out of 119.13 lac souls, 13.77 lac souls falling under AAY category shall get rations at the rate of Rs 2 per kg (atta) and Rs 3 per kg (rice). The scale of 35 kgs per family shall be maintained in AAY category irrespective of the number of souls in each family.
- Under BPL category, 26.49 lac souls will get rations at the rate of Rs 2 per kg (atta) and Rs 3 per kg (rice) with every member of a family entitled to get 5 kgs ration.
- Under Priority Class, 33.87 lac souls will get rations at the rate of Rs 2 per kg (atta) and Rs 3 per kg (rice) with every member of a family entitled to get 5 kgs ration.
- In the Non-Priority Category, 45 lac souls will get rations at the subsidized rate of Rs 8 (atta) and Rs 10 (rice) with every member of a family entitled to get 5 kgs ration.
- Around 6 lac souls comprising of people with income of more than Rs 25 lac per year, persons holding constitutional positions including Ministers and Legislators, employees of the State and the Central Government in the Gazetted Cadre and people owning more than 80 kanals of land individually or 250 kanals of land in joint family shall be kept out of NFSA. For such families food-grains would be made available on OMSS (Open Market Sale Scheme) rates.
- Any person who is, due to some reason, denied ration, will be given food security allowance.
- Under the existing dispensation only 18.02 lac families comprising a population of 99 lac souls are covered under Public Distribution System (PDS) in J&K while NFSA will cover 22.73 lac families comprising a population of 119.13 lac souls.
- According to the government, implementation of NFSA shall usher an era of assured supply of highly subsidized rations to the citizens of J&K at their doorstep in a transparent manner.