Prime Minister Narendra Modi today extended PM Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana for a further five months till November-end for distributing free foodgrains to the poor. PM Modi said that the government will keep providing free foodgrains to the poor section of the society due to the increased need during the festivals. The PM further said that the government will incur an additional expenditure of Rs 90,000 crore to provide 5 kg rice or wheat and 1 kg gram every month to the poor. He highlighted that the free distribution of foodgrains to 80 crore people in India could feed 2.5 times the US population, 12 times the UK population and, twice the European Union’s population.
The Modi government had announced an additional allocation in the world’s largest food security scheme – PM Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana – earlier this year, which aimed to ensure sufficient foods with the poor and needy amid the coronavirus crisis. The foodgrains were to be distributed to all the beneficiaries under the targeted public distribution system (TPDS) for Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) and priority household (PHH) ration cardholders. The eligible individuals were to receive 5kg of foodgrains and 1 kg Gram per month for a period of three months between April and June, 2020, which has now been extended for five more months.
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During today’s address, PM Modi also said that timely lockdown and other major decisions saved lakhs of lives in the country and India stands in a better position than many other countries in the world. However, he added that people have started taking coronavirus casually after Unlock-1, which is a major concern now.
Meanwhile, in the wake of the ongoing economic and social crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Narendra Modi rolled out a special economic relief package worth Rs 21 lakh crore, which included the steps previously taken by the Reserve Bank of India and government’s earlier announcement of a relief package worth Rs 1.7 lakh crore. The package announced by the government aimed at helping the industry, middle class, micro, small and medium enterprises, and the large industries. PM Modi had said that the package focusses on land, labour, liquidity, and law, while helping small businesses, labourers, and farmers.