Government to Computerize Public Distribution System

Government of India will soon implement end-to-end computerization of Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) to make its reach more effective and beneficiary-friendly.

The plan consists of digitization of ration card beneficiaries and other databases, computerization of supply-chain management, setting up of a transparency portal and grievance redressal mechanisms. Digitization of beneficiary databases and computerization of supply-chain management are expected to be implemented by March, 2013 and October, 2013 respectively.

Digitization of beneficiary databases will help in weeding out bogus ration cards and help in better targeting of subsidies. With the computerization of supply-chain management, the movement of foodgrains upto Fair Price Shop (FPS) level can be tracked and the problem of leakage and diversion can be addressed.

of SMSes, e-mails, toll free numbers will be used to inform the beneficiary about the availability of TPDS supplies in Fair Price Shops, which will ensure timely and transparent distribution of foodgrains to beneficiaries as per their entitlement. Transparency portal and social audit will further strengthen the functioning of FPSs and ensure accountability at various levels. Beneficiaries will also be able to register their grievances through toll free numbers and seek its resolution.

The central government and state governments will share the cost of the computerization process. The costs for the Centre are estimated to be at Rs. 489.37 crore, and for the state governments at Rs. 394.70 crore respectively. The pattern of cost sharing between Centre and states will be on 90:10 for the North-eastern States, whereas for other States/UTs, the cost will be shared equally.