Odisha rejects Centre’s cash plan for PDS beneficiaries

Bhubaneswar: Rejecting the Centre’s proposal of providing money to the beneficiaries instead of rice and wheat under the Public Distribution System (PSD), the Odisha government today said the move can ruin the state’s rural economy.

“The state government cannot accept this proposal of giving money directly to beneficiaries through cash transfer instead of rice and wheat. It will damage the rural economy,” state Food and Consumer Welfare minister Sanjay Dasburma said in the Assembly while replying to a debate on his department’s budget demand.

Stating that he has already apprised the state’s view on the proposal, Dasburma said the state government would put forward its demand of continuing with the existing PDS system.

The Odisha government has raised questions as to why the Shanta Kumar Committee set up by the Centre to recommend structural changes in Food Corporation of India (FCI), gave its opinion on PDS and Food Security Act.

Dasburma alleged that the committee went beyond its limits and recommended changes in the PDS system.