Sonia Gandhi could not secure the UPA’s third term in power despite passing the Food Security Act before the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Narendra Modi used the Food Security Act to win the 2024 Lok Sabha elections and return to power for a third term. One step ahead of Sonia, Prime Minister Narendra Modi decided to distribute a free ration for the next year.
Until now, more than 80 crore people were distributed subsidized rice, wheat, sorghum, and millet at a low price under the Food Security Act. One had to pay 3 rupees per kg for rice, 2 rupees per kg for wheat, and 1 rupee per kg for millet. Yesterday, the Union Cabinet decided that this ration will be completely free till December 2023. The Modi government has dubbed it a ‘New Year’s gift’ to the poor. According to BJP sources, this strategy is to keep public support intact by covering up the dissatisfaction of the people with the price increase.
Food Security Act
Now under the Food Security Act, families under the ‘Antyodaya Anna Yojana’ get 35 kg of rice and wheat per month. Priority families are given five kg of rice and wheat per head per month. 2. In total, 81.35 crore people are covered under the Food Security Act. They will all get a free ration for the next year.
According to government sources, the ‘Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana’, which was launched during the time of Covid, is being put to an end even though the entire ration is distributed free. In this scheme, for the last 28 months, an additional five kg of food grains were being distributed free of charge. His term ends on December 31. According to government sources, the free extra ration will be stopped and the entire ration will be given free from now on.
Nine states have assembly polls in 2023 before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. Among them, BJP is not in power in states like Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, and Telangana. BJP is in power in Karnataka and Tripura but not in a good position. Jammu and Kashmir may also vote with him. BJP leaders feel that ‘historic decisions’ like completely free rations in this electoral battle will help them gain an advantage at the ballot box. On the other hand, the question of the opposition is that Narendra Modi himself has been sarcastically calling this ‘rewarding’ for a long time. Why is he now walking on the path of the charity before the election?
Responding to Union Food Minister Piyush Goyal, Prime Minister Narendra Modi once again showed his sensitive mind by taking this ‘historic’ decision. 2 lakh crore will be spent for this every financial year. The entire responsibility of food subsidy will be borne by the central government. 2.07 lakh crore was allocated in the budget for food subsidies in the current financial year. Later, the Prime Minister had to allocate an additional 80 thousand crore rupees for the ‘Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana’.