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Sidharth Tanmoy Dash

Bhubaneswar: Doubts are being raised over the motive behind the new State Food Security Act, after Opposition parties allege beneficiaries of the scheme are being chosen on basis of party affiliations.

A video showing Kantabanji MLA Ayub Khan denying ration card to an old woman for not voting BJD party and another one of BJP MLA Pradip Purohit shouting at officials during zilla parishad meeting, have prompted the Oppositions to train guns at the ruling party over the implementation of scheme.

"The government-run scheme has become a weapon for the ruling party to influence voters," said Odisha BJP secretary, Lekhasri Samantsinghar.

Expressing similar views, Senior Congress leader, Srikant Jena said, “Around 3.60 core people are below poverty line out of the total population of four crore in the State. Therefore, the Odisha government should slap its own face and feel ashamed."

Meanwhile, the Odisha government is now in a fix over the increasing number of applications for the new State Food Security Act that was launched by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Gandhi Jayanti this year.
The State government had targeted to bring 15 lakh beneficiaries under this new scheme. But 35 lakh pending enrolment applications have now left the government worried.

Blaming the Centre for irregularities in the implementation of National Food security Act (NFSA), the state government had launched its own food security act with a target to cover 34 Lakh people who were left out of the national scheme list.

Despite the State government’s claims of inducting 10 lakh beneficiaries under the State Food Security Scheme within 10 days, Food Supplies Minister Surya Narayan Patro stated that 20 lakh people have been enrolled into the scheme.

Still cases of people being left out of the beneficiary list have surfaced at various places across the State.

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