New Delhi: The government is likely to provide subsidised wheat and rice to 1.5 crore additional BPL families from October 2, Food and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar
told the Rajya Sabha on Friday.
Replying to supplementaries during Question Hour, he said the Planning Commission will give the revised number of people living below poverty line (BPL) in a month`s time.
The revision is being done based on the parameter decided by the Tendulkar Committee for identifying the poor. The exercise has been undertaken in view of the proposed Food
Security Act, which promises assured quantity of foodgrains to BPL families, he said.
The number of BPL people is likely to go up from 6.5 crore to 8.07 crore, he said adding, "It is the desire of the government, if possible, to introduce the scheme from October
2 (Gandhi Jayanti day)."
At present, the government is supplying every month about 35 kg of rice and wheat at subsidised rates to each poor family under BPL and AAY category. Rice is sold at Rs 5.65 a kg and wheat at Rs 4.15 a kg to BPL families, and at Rs 3 and Rs 2, respectively, for AAY families.
Pawar said it is government intended to give wheat and rice at Rs 3 per kg to people living below poverty line (BPL) but it has not yet been decided if the quantity would be 20 kg or 25 kg or 35 kg a month.
This will be possible only after passage of the National Food Security Bill, he added.