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Q. TN and Kerala to implement food security act: Comment on recent decision by Kerala and Tamil Nadu governments decision to implement food security act.
Oct 29, 2016 Related to : GS Paper-3

Ans :

Introduction-

National Food Security Act 2013 (NFSA) is in force and implementing since last three years across the country except Kerala and Tamil Nadu. These governments were raised reservation over NFSA, despite being passed by Indian Parliament, these two governments continued their own policy of food distribution.

In news-

Recently both Tamil Nadu and Kerala governments have announced that their respective government will implement centre’s food security act in those two states from November 1st. There will be no change in the government’s policy of universal public distribution system.

Reasons-

  • Central government has pressurised these two states by threatening to raise the price at which it was allocating foodgrains if they did not implement the law.
  • Raising the prices of food grains would have meant an additional expenditure of few thousand crores in these states. To avoid these burdens these two states have fallen in line. 

Analysis-

  • The concern over implementing NFSA was the possibility that many beneficiaries may be left out under the Centre’s categorisation of PDS consumers into priority households and others.
  • Though these two states wanted to implement NFSA, but they saught tome to complete end-to-end computerisation of their PDS and the process of seeding Aadhaar numbers with family cards.
  • The advantage of joining the national food security system now is that the computerisation and Aadhaar seeding process may result in the elimination of bogus cards and beneficiaries. 
  • A national food security law may hold good for States if states implemented it with more effectively.

Suggestions-

  • It has been found in some states that, the number of beneficiaries were more than the total state population. These aspect needs to be addressed by realistic survey.
  • For effective implementation of the act, various issues associated with public distribution system needs to be addressed.

Conclusion-

National food security act has been passed with aim to realise the universal food distribution coverage. Though its intentions are realistic, but it needs more effective implementation.  Since last three year both Tamil Nadu and Karnataka were raised reservation, but finally they have agreed to implement the NFSA is welcome move. The issued related to implementation of this act needs to be addressed.


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