Vikash Sharma

Around 40,000 Fair Price Shop (FPS) dealers in the country are earning an income of Rs 50,000 by providing other services.

Secretary of Department of Food & Public Distribution (DFPD), Sanjeev Chopra, during an event on 'The National Conference on Transformation of Fair Price Shops;’ informed that there is a need to transform FPS through technological interventions. The objective is to make ration shops vibrant, modern, and viable by enabling them to offer more products and services apart from running PDS operations.

It is pertinent to mention here that DFPD has already written to states to allow ration shop dealers to keep non-PDS items such as FMCG products and many states have allowed them.

Sharing success stories of FPS dealers in Gujarat who are earning Rs 50,000 by providing additional CSC (common service centre) services, Chopra requested all the States/UTs to identify and develop 75 Model FPSs in each district as per the indicative characteristics shared by DFPD.

These model shops could have waiting spaces, CCTV cameras, toilets, and drinking water facilities among others, reported PIB.

As per the PIB report, DFPD has engaged IIT Delhi and World Food Programme for the optimization of routes to these fair price shops, which will reduce the transport cost and save on food subsidy. This will also streamline the supply chain systems and movement of food grains under the doorstep delivery of ration to the FPSs.