CS reviews functioning of Public Distribution System

Chief Secretary Dr Arun Kumar Mehta chairing a meeting in Srinagar on Monday.
Chief Secretary Dr Arun Kumar Mehta chairing a meeting in Srinagar on Monday.

* Directs removal of fake beneficiaries by July 31

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR, June 14: The Chief Secretary, Dr. Arun Kumar Mehta today chaired a meeting to review the functioning of the Public Distribution System (PDS) in Jammu and Kashmir.
Commissioner/Secretary Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs, Directors Jammu and Kashmir, and concerned officers of the Department participated in the meeting.
At the outset, Commissioner/Secretary, FCS&CA, Zubair Ahmad gave a detailed presentation on the overall functioning of the department in the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
Taking note of the J&K’s 6th ranking in the index measuring performance under ‘One Nation One Ration Card’, the Chief Secretary appreciated the Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Department for efficiently implementing the scheme across the Union territory.
“One Nation One Ration Card System is an important citizen-centric reform and its implementation ensures availability of ration to beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) through portability across the country”, he observed.
It was informed that the department is ensuring food security to the residents of Jammu and Kashmir by timely and efficient distribution of food grains at highly subsidized and affordable prices through a network of 6738 Fair Price Shops (FPS). The department has distributed 1.03 lakh metric tonnes of foodgrains to the beneficiaries in the month of May, 2021.
The Chief Secretary directed the department to weed out fake beneficiaries through 100% Aadhar enrolment by 31st July 2021, besides operationalizing the online biometric-authenticated sale of ration across all 6738 FPS.
It was informed that the department is formulating a nomination policy whereby beneficiaries in old age or those living with disabilities can nominate a responsible person after due verification to collect the quota of the subsidized ration on their behalf.
Reviewing the supply chain management towards end-to-end computerization to contain wastage and pilferage of food grains, the Chief Secretary directed the department to implement real-time online monitoring of their storage and transportation to-and-fro all stores and FPS within one month.
The Chief Secretary directed FCS&CA Department to undertake a thorough review of kerosene distribution in Jammu and Kashmir in line with the guidelines of Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojna.
The department was also asked to undertake third party review of the Public Distribution System in Jammu and Kashmir bringing forth the satisfaction level of consumers.
Meanwhile, Dr. Arun Kumar Mehta along with Financial Commissioner, Health and Medical Education Department visited the Shri Maharaja Hari Singh (SMHS) Hospital and took stock of medical facilities being provided, especially to COVID patients.
During the visit, the Chief Secretary inspected various medical wards and checked availability of necessary equipment and other facilities at the tertiary hospital.
He also reviewed the status of bed occupancy and availability for isolation and treatment of COVID patients; oxygen demand and supply, and duty roster of medical professionals to cater to COVID/non-COVID patients.
The hospital administration was directed to optimally utilize the available human and material resources for treating COVID and non-COVID patients and ensure that high-quality medical care is provided to patients round-the-clock.
The Chief Secretary further directed doctors and paramedical staff to make frequent check-up rounds to monitor patients’ health conditions and take timely measures to prevent health deterioration of critical patients as a part of robust healthcare system.