The Public Distribution System (PDS) in India has emerged as an important tool for management of food economy in the country. Operated jointly by the Central and the state governments, PDS has undergone a tremendous transformation in terms of innovations adopted to stop pilferages to ensure that subsidised food grains reach the intended beneficiaries in a transparent and efficient manner.
Adoption of Information Technology by state governments and the Centre has been playing a crucial role in identifying eligible families, resolving various issues related to ration cards and supervision of the functioning of Fair Price Shops (FPSs). As a result, all the existing 23 crore ration cards have been digitised and most of the cards have been seeded with Aadhaar numbers.
Moreover, between 2013 and 2017 the government has deleted crores of ration cards ensuring better targeting of beneficiaries. In order to ensure transparency in grain sale process in the PDS, the electronic Point of Sale (ePoS) machines have been installed in close to four lakh fair prices shops (FPSs) out of nearly 5.33 lakh FPSs in the country.
The Department of Food, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs, Government of Rajasthan, in association with Elets Technomedia Pvt Ltd, has come up with the National Souvenir on ‘Food-Nutritional Security and Automation of Public Distribution System’ to underscore the remarkable progress made by various State Governments and the Centre to ensure access to adequate quantity of quality food at affordable prices to the people to live a life with dignity.
A compilation of specially-curated articles, features, and interviews from top decision-makers, experts and other important stakeholders, the souvenir seeks to capture how innovative methods were used to overcome the challenges in procurement, storage, transportation and bulk allocation of food grains across the country.
We are hopeful that the publication will help the country’s Public Distribution System to gain immensely from the useful insights it would provide.