Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY)
Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY) is an integrated food security scheme launched by the Central Government of India in January 2023. The scheme aims to provide free foodgrains to more than 80 crore poor people across the country.
The scheme has been introduced amid the criticism from the opposition over the discontinuation of the free monthly distribution of 5 kilograms of foodgrains to poor people under a scheme that was also known as PMGKAY. The previous scheme was launched in April 2020 in response to the coronavirus pandemic and ended in December 2022.
Integration of existing schemes
The Central Government decided to subsume PMGKAY into two existing food subsidy schemes. The new integrated food security scheme, named Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY), came into force from January 1, 2023.
Under the new scheme, free foodgrains will be provided to the poor beneficiaries as per the entitlement under the National Food Security Act (NFSA). The entitlement of foodgrains per person per month is 5 kg for priority households category and 35 kg per family per month for Antodaya Anna Yojna (AAY) families. Until December 2022, the NFSA beneficiaries were getting their foodgrains entitlement at a highly subsidised rate of ₹1, ₹2, and ₹3 per kg for coarse cereals, wheat and rice, respectively. However, from January 2023, the beneficiaries will get it for free.
The Central Government will spend more than ₹2 lakh crore in 2023 as food subsidy under the NFSA and other welfare schemes to remove the financial burden of the poor. Necessary steps have already been taken for smooth implementation of the PMGKAY in the field. The Ministry and state-run Food Corporation of India (FCI) officials are regularly interacting with state government officers for smooth roll out of the new scheme.
The Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY) aims to provide free foodgrains to more than 80 crore poor people across the country. The integration of the scheme into two existing food subsidy schemes is expected to improve the overall implementation and reach of the scheme to the needy people. The Central Government is expected to spend more than ₹2 lakh crore in 2023 as food subsidy under the NFSA and other welfare schemes to remove the financial burden of the poor.
Category: Government Schemes Current Affairs
Topics: direct benefit transfer (DBT) • Food security • Government Scheme • Poverty alleviation • Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY) • public distribution system (PDS) • welfare program
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