Press Trust of India

LG announces 10 kg per month additional ration for over 14 lakh priority households

LG announces 10 kg per month additional ration for over 14 lakh priority households
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Says food grains to be provided at subsidised rates

Srinagar: Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha Saturday announced an additional ration of 10 kg per month at subsidised rates for priority households in the Union territory, a decision which will benefit over 57 lakh people.

The announcement was made by Sinha during a press conference at Raj Bhavan here.

“There are 2.29 lakh families which get 35 kg ration free of cost. For priority households (PHH), a five kg ration is given per person free of cost. If there are two persons in the family, then it is 10 kg, if three, then 15 kg.

“I met many people who said it was not sufficient for them. We discussed the ways to help them. So, the administration has come up with a scheme – PM’s food supplementation for priority households’ under which 10 kgs of rice will be provided additionally than the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana, to priority households at subsidised rates every month,” he said.

The LG said there are about 14.32 lakh ration card holders under the PHH, with 57.24 lakh beneficiaries.

There will be a maximum ceiling of 35 kg per family per month in terms of ration in the two categories.

This decision has been taken keeping in mind the welfare of the poor people. This will improve their economic condition. The welfare of the poor is the top priority of the J-K administration, Sinha said.

If the family has three persons, then they will get 15 kg free, and an additional 10 kg at subsidised rates by the J-K administrations. If the family has four members, they will get 20 kg free, and 10 kg more.

Similarly, if there are five members, then they will get 25 kg free and an additional 10 kg at subsidised rates. “But, if there are six members, they will get 30 kg free, and five kgs at subsidised rates as the maximum ceiling is 35 kg,” he said.

Sinha said the administration will buy this ration at Rs 34 per kg and will give a subsidy of Rs nine per kg.

“So, these families will get it at Rs 25 per kg. This will cost the government Rs 180 crore per year,” he said, adding, the subsidy has now been increased from Rs five to Rs nine.

Asked if the government was contemplating any policy of relaxation in the power tariff for the poor as there have been protests in several areas over the installation of smart metres, the LG said the people will have to pay power bills as per their consumption.

“The power tariff bills from the Centre have mounted to Rs 31000 crore in the last four years. The electricity has been supplied to the people and this system will not work for long. Smart metres are being installed, and whatever electricity people will use, they will have to pay for the same,” he said.

Sinha said if people who are well-off pay their bills and there are no losses, then the J-K administration will be able to frame a policy for assisting the poor.

About steps taken by the administration in view of the caving in of a road stretch at Panthal, the LG said that efforts are on to make an alternative road ready within three days to facilitate Amarnath pilgrims.

“The permanent solution is the completion of the tunnel,” he said.

To a question about the temporary suspension of the Amaranth yatra due to inclement weather, and the arrangements for the yatris, the LG said all the arrangements were in place and the administration was taking hourly reports about the status of the pilgrimage.

“The yatra has been stopped and it cannot take place in such weather. Once the weather improves, we will allow the yatra as the safety of the people is of the utmost importance.

“The arrangements are in place, the yatra is reviewed twice every day, we take hourly reports. I hope the weather improves from tomorrow so that the yatra restarts,” he said.

On a query over the condition of the Srinagar-Jammu national highway, and the frequent disruptions caused due to bad weather, Sinha said the highway will see a smooth traffic when the final tunnel is complete and operational.

“A portion of the road near the tunnel has caved in due to heavy rain. An alternative road (which was there earlier) has been readied and yatris will move via that. I have taken an assessment in the afternoon, once the weather situation improves, we will build a Bailey bridge in the coming three days and LMVs will be allowed on that. A permanent solution will come only when the tunnels are ready,” he said.

The LG said the work on the Mughal Road has also been completed and the traffic was plying on it, but, due to heavy rains, it was stopped.

Once the weather improves, it will be reopened, he added.

Press Trust of India

Press Trust of India is lead news agency of India

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