SMART PDS Scheme
Polity & Governance
31st Mar, 2023
The Department of Food and Public Distribution (DFPD) is envisaging a new and unified scheme to strengthen the PDS technology components by standardization of its operation and implementing data-driven decision-making through data analytics.
About the scheme:
- Full-Form: Scheme for Modernization and Reforms through Technology in Public Distribution System.
- Aim: to transform the entire PDS IT ecosystem by leveraging the usage of Cloud and new-age technology.
Also, to prevent leakage of food grains, and increase efficiency of the distribution.
- Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution.
- Components of SMART-PDS:
- Smart Ration Card:SMART-PDS is a system where smart ration cards are issued to beneficiaries of the public distribution system, and ration is given through fair price shops on the production of the smart ration card by any member of the beneficiary family.
- Fingerprint Template:The fingerprint template of the beneficiary is recorded in these smart ration cards, which record all transactions.
- Fund allocation: Funds should also be allocated by the state governments, as according to the National Food Security Act, ration cards are issued by the state government.
- Estimation: The expected procurement of coarse grains/millets (Shri Anna) is 7.50 LMT during the KMS 2022-23(Kharif & Rabi) as against actual procurement of 6.30 LMT during KMS 2021-22.
Need of the initiative:
- With technological advancements, it is essential that the ration shops become digitalised for easy and quick transactions.
- It will also keep the entire process transparent and reduce corruption.
Working of the Smart PDS system:
- To issue smart cards: The smart PDS is a joint operation of the central and state government. However, it is the responsibility of the state governments to issue smart cards.
- The operational responsibility of the ration cards also lies with the state government.
- Allocation of ration: The Centre will only allocate rice, wheat, kerosene, and sugar to the state government and Union Territories under this scheme.
- Distribution: It is the duty of the state governments to distribute the allocated food grains among the citizens.