PDS Digitisation on the priority agenda of the Himachal Government

Providing essential commodities to the people of the State at reasonable rates has been the main concern of the State Government. Himachal Pradesh has a strong network of 117 wholesale godowns of HP State Civil Supplies Corporation Ltd. and an aggregate number of 5,078 retail fair price shops in the State, making the Target Public Distribution System of the State one of the most robust Public Distribution System in the country.

         Out of these 5,078 fair price shops, 3,285 are being manned by Cooperative Sector, 19 by Panchayats, 65 by HPSCSC Ltd., 1,685 by individuals and 24 by Mahila Mandals/Self Help Groups. This system is proving a boon to the weaker sections of the society in getting essential commodities at reasonable rates.

       The State Government is focusing on digitisation and automation of the food distribution management system to increase efficiency and ensure transparency in the system. The scheme comprises the digitization of ration cards to make it more effective and transparent. So far 19.08 lakh ration cards have been digitized. Android based devices have also been installed at all Fair Price Shops for automation of Fair Price Shops throughout the State.

      The Food and Civil Supplies department is implementing ‘End-to-End Computerization’ to improve the efficiency and transparency in Public Distribution System (PDS). The departmental officers and regional inspectors have been directed to regularly inspect wholesale stores, flour mills and fair price shops to take special care of the quality of food items under the public distribution system. In addition to this, smooth distribution of Liquefied Petroleum Gas is also being ensured throughout the State.

       Distribution of essential commodities to the holders is being done under APL, BPL Antyodaya Anna Yojana, and Annapurna Yojana. Edible oil containing iron, folic acid, and Vitamin D is being also being distributed to all ration card holders in all fair price shops throughout the State.

         Point of sales machines have been installed at fair price shops to ensure fairness in sale of products.  Apart from this, the work of Aadhaar seeding has almost been completed, now it will be easier to identify the eligible consumers. This will check bogus and duplicate ration cards in the State.

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