*Attends national conference of Food Ministers on reforms
NEW DELHI, Jan 19: Jammu and Kashmir Government will make Public Distribution System cashless by end of December 2017 with installation of Point of Sales (PoS) machines on every Fair Price Shop.
Minister for Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali stated this while addressing a conference of Food Ministers and Food Secretaries of all the States and Union Territories on the topic “PDS Reforms Cashless Environment” held here today at Vigyan Bhawan.
Zulfkar, while elaborating on salient features of the initiative of the Government, said that PoS machines would initially be installed in urban districts before June and efforts would be made to make process of making PDS cashless in all 22 districts of the State by the end of December 2017.
During the conference, chaired by Union Minister for Food and Public Distribution Ram Vilas Paswan, Zulfkar along with Secretary Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Shafiq Ahmed Raina represented Jammu and Kashmir and highlighted State’s profile in the sector.
Elaborating on the activities undertaken in e-PDS project, Zulfkar said that the department has digitized the details of beneficiaries and the Master Data stands uploaded on the ERCMS Portal. He said that under PHH (AAY) category, 234026 Ration Cards with 1092233 souls were digitized. Besides, in PHH 1441995 Ration Cards with 6370527 souls and 1106317 Ration Cards having 4808998 souls in NPHH have been digitized.
Regarding implementation of the FPS Automation, the Minister said that the online Request for Proposals (RFP) for Selection of System Integrator for Supply, Installation with application and maintenance of PoS devices has been uploaded and the date for finalization of tender has been fixed as January 27, 2017.
The Minister further informed that the department has specified that only those PoS devices will be accepted by J&K Government which is compliant to Indian Banks Association’s Standards of MICRO ATM 1.5.1 version notified in March 2013. He added that the State Government is also implementing Public Financial Management System (PFMS) in the State and March 31, 2017 has been fixed as target date for completion of the process for implementing this vital initiative.
Regarding the Supply Chain Management, Zulfkar said that software for implementation of the system has been customized by NIC J&K, adding that 439 computers have been procured by the department which would be installed in field offices.
Highlighting the issues in Aadhar seeding, the Minister said that the department is confronting connectivity problem due to State’s tough topography. He requested the Union Government to look into the issue and instruct the concerned agencies for improvement in the internet connectivity in the State.