Revising National Food Security Act, 2013: NITI Aayog:
NITI Aayog, through a discussion paper, has recommended reducing the rural and urban coverage under the National Food Security Act (NFSA), 2013, to 60% and 40%, respectively.
- It has also proposed a revision of beneficiaries as per the latest population which is currently being done through Census- 2011.
- Approximately 2.37 crore households or 9.01 crore persons, as in February 2021 under Antyodaya Anna Yojana.
- While approximately 70.35 crore persons are under the priority households.
Significance of the NITI Aayog’s Recommendations:
- If the rural-urban coverage ratio remains the same (67% of all population), then the total number of people covered will increase from the existing 81.35 crores to 89.52 crore – an increase of 8.17 crore (based on the projected 2020 population).
- This will result in an additional subsidy requirement of Rs. 14,800 crore.
- If the national coverage ratio is revised downward, the Centre can save up to Rs. 47,229 crore.
- This amount of savings can be utilised by the Government in other important areas of concern such as health and education.
National Food Security Act (NFSA), 2013
- Notified on: 10th September 2013.
- Objective: To provide for food and nutritional security in the human life cycle approach, by ensuring access to adequate quantities of quality food at affordable prices to people to live a life with dignity.
- Coverage: 75% of the rural population and upto 50% of the urban population for receiving subsidized foodgrains under the Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS).
- Overall, NFSA caters to 67% of the total population.
- Priority Households to be covered under TPDS, according to guidelines by the State government.
- Households covered under existing Antyodaya Anna Yojana.
- 5 Kgs of foodgrains per person per month at Rs. 3/2/1 per Kg for rice/wheat/coarse grains.
- The existing AAY household will continue to receive 35 Kgs of foodgrains per household per month.
- Meal and maternity benefit of not less than Rs. 6,000 to pregnant women and lactating mothers during pregnancy and six months after the child birth.
- Meals for children upto 14 years of age.
- Food security allowance to beneficiaries in case of non-supply of entitled foodgrains or meals.
- Setting up of grievance redressal mechanisms at the district and state level.