Ramesh rejects Odisha’s claim, says state to benefit from FSA

Bhubaneswar: Rejecting Odisha government's claim that it would be a net loser in event of implementation of provisions of the Food Security Bill, Union Minister Jairam Ramesh today said the state would get Rs 4,800 crore as food subsidy against Rs 4,100 crore received earlier per annum.
"After implementation of Food Security Act, 82 per cent people in rural Odisha and 56 per cent in urban areas of the state will benefit under the scheme," he told reporters here.
He said the state will get Rs 4,800 crore subsidy under the scheme every year against Rs 4,100 crore under the present system of allocation.
Claiming his figures were based on facts, Ramesh said the Centre was not into political discrimination against Odisha or any state as claimed by BJD-led Odisha government.
Replying to Odisha government's claim that the state's share of foodgrains would be slashed if the Act is implemented, the Union Minister said Odisha would receive a higher amount than the present allocation.
Odisha has been receiving an average of 20.8 lakh tonnes of foodgrains under Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) every year for last three years. And now, the state will get 21.1 lakh tonnes per year under the Food Act, Ramesh said.
"The allegations of the state government are false and baseless. It is only politicisation. No state will be affected due to the implementation of the Act," he said.
Odisha's Food Supplies Minister P K Deb, however, rejected Ramesh's claim and said the state will receive less foodgrain besides its poor people getting less grains.
When the poor families were now getting 25 kg of rice per month irrespective of their family size, they would get 5 kg of grain per head per month, Deb said.
A family comprising an old couple would get only 10 kg of rice per month if the new act was implemented instead of 25 kg, Deb said.