New Delhi, May 19 (IANS) People living below and above the poverty line will get extra quantities of rice and wheat at special prices from Thursday, Food and Consumer Affairs Minister K.V. Thomas said here Wednesday.
‘The people belonging to both these categories (BPL and APL) will be provided the additional quantity of wheat and rice at special prices. They will get rice at Rs.11.85 a kg and wheat at Rs.8-9 a kg from tomorrow (Thursday),’ Thomas told IANS.
The government has made an additional allocation of 55,000 tonnes of rice and 40,000 tonnes of wheat to the public distribution system for the purpose, he said.
He said people belonging to the APL category will get extra seven kg of wheat and rice. The existing rice and wheat quota for the APL category is 10 kg per month.
People belonging to the BPL category get 35 kg per month.
‘This programme will conclude Nov 20,’ he said.
Thomas said the decision to provide the additional quantities of wheat and rice at special prices was taken at the meeting of the Empowered Group of Ministers (eGoM) held May 5.
The decision was taken considering the state governments’ demand for increased allocation of wheat and rice, he said.
‘It will also help to further ease the price rise, which is already under control,’ Thomas said.
The government has taken several steps to contain the rise in prices of wheat and rice. These include a scheme for allocation of wheat to retail consumers, which has now been extended till June 30 in non-wheat procuring states, Jammu and Kashmir and Delhi. The scheme to allocate rice in all states has been extended till June 30.
The government had allocated 20.81 lakh tonnes of wheat for tender sale to bulk consumers through the Food Corporation of India from October 2009 to March 2010.
‘The scheme has now been extended up to June 30 in non-wheat procuring states,’ the ministry said.