AP: Cash in lieu of rice is completely voluntary, says minister

Amaravati: Andhra Pradesh minister for civil supplies Karumuri Nageswara Rao flayed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for its false propaganda on payment of cash in lieu of rice under the Public Distribution System (PDS) and said the scheme is completely voluntary.

Speaking to media on Wednesday, the minister said the state government is implementing the scheme as per the recommendations of the central government. He reminded that BJP-led central government has recommended to implement this scheme in 2017, and it is in implementation in union territories like Chandigarh, Pondicherry and Dadra and Nagar Haveli already.

The minister said rice is not used by people at various locations due to health reasons, and the central government has recommended this scheme to provide beneficiaries with choice of buying required food grains for consumption. “The state government has been conducting a survey for the implementation of cash transfer scheme and it will start once the price of rice is fixed,” he said.

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Rao said it is voluntary to opt for cash and there is an option to change their choice. He assured that no ration card will be revoked because of the implementation of cash-transfer scheme. “The state government is committed to provide ration card to every eligible beneficiary, we will be sanctioning them in June and December,” he said.

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