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One Nation One Ration Card Scheme

The 'One Nation One Ration Card' scheme, which will allow portability of food security benefits, will be available across the country from July 1, 2020.  This means poor migrant workers will be able to buy subsidized rice and wheat from any ration shop.  country, so long as their ration card is linked to Aadhaar.

‘One Nation One Ration Card’ online

Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan on Saturday said that all states have been given one more year to implement the scheme and use Point of Sale (PoS) machines in ration shops.  He said that already 77% of ration shops across the country have PoS machines and more than 85% people are linked with Aadhar card under the National Food Security Act (NFSA).

According to a senior food ministry official, Aadhaar linkage is not required to access NFSA benefits at a beneficiary's local registered ration shop, but will be required to use the portability scheme. 

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Ten states - Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Telangana and Tripura - already offer this portability, Mr. Paswan said.  Delhi also started implementing portability, although this was later stopped due to technical reasons.  Other states including Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and Tamil Nadu could easily implement this scheme, as they had PoS machines in all the ration shops.

 "This scheme will ensure that no poor person is deprived of subsidized food grains," the minister said.  "We have written to all the state governments to keep a fast track on its implementation so that the entire country is ready to implement 'One Nation, One Ration Card' by June 30, 2020."

A senior ministry official clarified that migrants would only be eligible for the subsidy supported by the Centre, including rice of Rs.  3/kg and wheat at Rs.  2/kg.  Even if a beneficiary moved to a state where grains were given free of charge, that person would not have access to those benefits, as they were funded by the state.

To reduce nutritional deficiencies among the beneficiaries, the Center will launch a pilot project to fortify rice cereals with iron, folic acid, vitamin A and vitamin B12 in 15 districts.  The first Garhwa grain will be available in ration shops from this November.

Shri Paswan said that the State Governments have also been given a time limit of six months to make their depot and godown operations online.  Ultimately, it will be possible to monitor the entire network of state-owned grain storage facilities, including the central godowns already computerized, using the integrated dashboard.