K’taka: Govt to rob APL card holders of rice to feed BPL families

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(P M Raghunandan) Bangalore, June 14, 2013:

State needs 2.84 lakh metric tonnes per month for the new scheme

 The Congress government has decided to discontinue providing rice to all Above Poverty Line (APL) ration card holders under the public distribution system (PDS) from next month, and divert foodgrain available under the APL quota for implementing its ambitious Re 1-per-kg rice scheme for Below Poverty Line (BPL) families.

The Food and Civil Supplies department has been providing 10 kg rice to each APL ration card holder every month at Rs 10 per kg. It will now be discontinued, enabling the government to implement the new rice scheme which is scheduled to be launched on July 1, official sources said.

A decision to this effect was taken at a recently-held meeting chaired by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and top officials of the Finance and Food and Civil Supplies departments. It was, however, decided to restore rice to APL card holders once the State starts getting adequate quantity of rice from the Centre – likely after the the proposed Food Security Bill is enacted.

Interestingly, Siddaramaiah had recently said that his government will continue providing rice to APL card holders under the PDS along with implementing the Re 1 per kg rice scheme.

The State needs 2.84 lakh metric tonnes of rice per month for the new rice scheme.
But it is getting 1.77 lakh MT of rice per month from the Centre, including 85,000 MT for 34 lakh APL card holders. The APL rice will now be diverted to the new scheme.

It will considerably ease the burden on the government. Besides, the State Cabinet meeting chaired by the chief minister on Thursday decided to retain unit system (system of fixing quntum of rice per person) under its proposed scheme to lessen its financial burden.

The government, however, has to procure still an additional 1.07 lakh MT of rice every month from the open market for the scheme.

Official sources said a majority of the APL card holders was not buying rice under the PDS till the last few years. But the demand increased of late due to the steep hike in rice prices. A kg of widely-used Sona Masuri rice costs Rs 56 in open market, while ordinary rice (also called dosa rice) costs Rs 28 per kg.

As the Food and Civil Supplies Department provides rice – which is similar to the rice which is ususally used for dosa batter – at Rs 10 per kg, more and more APL families had been buying from ration shops, officials explained.

When contacted, Minister of State for Food and Civil Supplies Dinesh Gundu Rao said the government has no plans to provide rice to APL card holders as of now.

“Our focus is on supplying rice to BPL families under the new scheme. Moreover, rice meant for APL card holders was misused.

“There was a lot of diversion. This will be stopped now,” he added.

He is a Software Engineer from Moodbidri currently living in Kuwait. He likes to travel and post interesting things about technology. He is the designer of Kannadigaworld.com. You may follow him on FB at fb.com/alanpaladka


  1. B.A.Krishnamurthy

    Govt should provide some facility to APL card holders also. If not Rs.1 per kg rice. They should provide at Rs.10/- and also other facility at better price. Lot of BPL card holders are well earning people better than APL card holders (Govt should cross check each & every quarter each and every BPL card holders assests and earnings)

  2. This is TOTAL INJUSTICE to APL Card holders….why should then we have a ration card…why the government made all of to undergo the ordeal of getting a ration card….
    when the government wants votes …they come to the APL families and seek votes …but they don’t want to give any benefits ….looks like APL card holders will have to starve and die !!!Shame on this government!!!

  3. If rice and wheat are not providing to APL card holders then there will be no use of taking APL ration card, Karnataka govt is making injustice for APL card holders. BPL card holders means below poverty line, but even a person who do coolie work also he will get min of 350 to 400 that means 6 days working he will get 350×6=2100 and he will get 8400 per month he stays in 2500 or 3000 rented house and rest what he will do? and he will cross 1 lakh per year if he gets benefit of rice and wheat and what APL card holder families will do… 🙁

  4. What is the criteria for the government to arrive at a decision of APL & BPL, whether it is based on total monthly income or anything else? People already having enough money are also registering themselves as BPL cardholders by influencing unduly with the officials of food & civil supplies department. No address / income verification of the persons has been taken by the department officials thereby causing great injustice with the genuine cardholders.

    Anybody is there to answer to the above?

    • Sir,
      I don’t understand the logic of the government.When they want vote they come to APL people also. Why?.
      Secondly not even 1% of people in Bangalore are really BPL.There IT ENGINEERS drawing above 60k INR per month having BPL card but as an ex serviceman pensioner, I have APL card because i declared my pension correctly.
      When will the govt really check the BPL holders.

  5. What about wheat? Will APL families get wheat or that also stopped. Ration shop staff says there in no rice and wheat for APL Card Holders.

  6. When rice price is soaring at Rs.50 and above per Kg., APL families can’t afford to purchase at that high rate and will just have to think of alternative foods and sacrifice their quota of food grains to BPL families as government is also not in their favour. Karnataka government is doing a big injustice to all APL families. All APL families and middle class people should vote against Congress party in the forthcoming 2014 Loksabha Election to teach them a lesson.

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