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‘New Year’s gift’: Govt announces free foodgrains to 81.35 crore beneficiaries

December 24, 2022
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New Delhi: The Central government will provide free foodgrains to about 81.35 crore beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) for one year from January 1, 2023, the Cabinet led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has decided.

The Centre will spend more than Rs 2 lakh crore in this period as food subsidy under NFSA and other welfare schemes, to remove the financial burden of the poor and the poorest of the poor, Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Commerce & Industry and Textiles said while addressing media persons after the Cabinet meeting.

The minister said this was a historic decision that reflects the sensitivity of the prime minister towards the beneficiaries of welfare schemes. He said 5 kg food grains per person to Priority Households (PHH) beneficiaries and 35 kg per household to Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) beneficiaries (poorest of the poor) will be provided free of cost for next one year.

 Goyal pointed out that the decision reflects the sensitivity of the Prime Minister towards the beneficiaries.

Goyal said that under NFSA, subsidized food grains was distributed at Rs 3 per kg for rice, Rs 2 per kg for wheat and Rs 1 per kg coarse grains to beneficiaries. The cabinet has decided that the beneficiaries will now receive the food grains free of cost.

He added that during COVID period, under the leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi, for 28 months free distribution of food grains was done under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY).

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