reduce allowances for very poor families and make them spend more on food, because entitlements would be calculated per individual rather than per family.
He said families below the poverty line would now have to spend an extra 85 rupees ($1.3) per month to keep eating the same amount of rice and wheat.
The expanded subsidy is a pet project of Congress leader Sonia Gandhi, who led the party to victory in the last two elections on the back of populist programmes such as a rural jobs plan and a $12.5 billion farmer loan waiver passed just before the 2009 general election.
In a dramatic development, Gandhi, widely seen as the country's most powerful politician, had to be led out of parliament during the debate. She was admitted to a New Delhi hospital after complaining of chest pain, television channels said.