Rs 2,94,718 cr released towards food subsidy in 2021-22: Govt

The PMGKAY, which has now been extended till September 2022, will involve an additional allocation of 244 LMT foodgrain with additional financial implication of about Rs 80,851 crore.

New Delhi: The Centre said on Wednesday that in FY 2021-22, it released Rs 2,94,718 crore for the procurement operations under minimum support price (MSP) and seamless distribution of food grains under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY) and the National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA).

This release of food subsidy is about 140 per cent of the food subsidy released during FY 2020-21 and about 267 per cent of the food subsidy released during FY 2019-20, the Department of Food & Public Distribution under the Ministry of Consumer, Food and Public Distribution said.

During the FY 2021-22, the Department of Food & Public Distribution released about Rs 24,000 crore for the benefit of Scheduled Castes, Rs 12,000 crore for Scheduled Tribes and more than Rs 400 crore for the Northeastern Region.

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In order to address the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the government had released additional foodgrain free of cost @ 5 kg per person per month to more than 80 crore NFSA beneficiaries under the PMGKAY, over and above their entitlement of foodgrains under NFSA.

This additional allocation has been made in five phases so far from April 2020 to March 2022. Since inception, a total of 758 LMT of foodgrain has been allocated under the scheme with financial implication of Rs 2.60 lakh crore.

The PMGKAY, which has now been extended till September 2022, will involve an additional allocation of 244 LMT foodgrain with additional financial implication of about Rs 80,851 crore.

A total of 1,175 LMT of foodgrain, including procurement of wheat during the Rabi Marketing Season 2021-22 and paddy in Kharif Marketing Season 2021-22, has been achieved with a direct payment of Rs 2.31 lakh crore of MSP, benefitting more than 154 lakh farmers, the ministry claimed.

Further, procurement of wheat has recently commenced in RMS 2022-23 in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh and the department is taking all required steps in this regard, it said.

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