Food Security Act: Odisha to digitise ration cards

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Bhubaneswar:  Moving ahead in the implementation of the National Food Security Act (NFSA), the Odisha government plans to take up digitisation for new ration cards from October 8.

Initially, the digitisation for new ration cards to enlist beneficiaries for NFSA will be done at 211 centres in Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) and Bhubaneswar block area and the process will continue till October 22.

The state food supplies & consumer welfare secretary M S Padhee has called for adequate security arrangements to maintain law and order during digital enrollment of beneficiaries.

'It is expected that a large number of people may gather in these centres for digitization purpose. There is a possibility of breach of peace during the process at these centres. I would therefore request you to take necessary steps during the digitization process from October 8-22,' Padhee wrote to the commisssioner of Police, Bhubaneswar-Cuttack.

The NFSA will be implemented in the state in a phased manner. In the first phase, it would be implemented in BMC and Bhubaneswar block on a pilot basis from February next year.

The digitisation process would be launched in all urban local bodies (ULBs) and district headquarter towns in the second phase. Rest of the blocks will be covered in the third phase. The entire process is expected to be over by July next year.

The state government had notified the eight exclusion criteria on July 17 in the NFSA. These include the Income tax payees, persons having vehicles including two wheelers, business with TIN (tax payer identification number), households with electricity consumption of above 300 units per month, state or central government employee, persons having power tillers, fishing boats or other heavy vehicles and professional tax payees. People falling under these categories cannot apply to get benefit under the scheme.

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