Bhubaneswar, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to direct the concerned ministries to release foodgrain and funds under the Annapurna scheme.
In a letter to the Prime Minister, the Chief Minister requested to issue instructions to the concerned ministries for early release of foodgrain and funds relating to the previous years.
He also urged to ensure timely release of allocation in future for the smooth running of the scheme.
“It is a matter of concern that for the year 2016-17 and 2017-18 no allocation of
foodgrains has been received by the state from the Department of Food and Public Distribution. Further, no funds have been received from the Ministry of Rural Development for the year 2017-18,” said Patnaik.
He informed that 64,800 old people are covered under Annapurna scheme, which provides 10 kg of rice free of cost.
In order to avoid inconvenience to the eligible old people and to ensure that their food security is taken care of, the state continues to meet the entire allocation of food grains out of the state pool, which is causing an additional financial burden on the state, he added.
The Union Ministry of Rural Development is the nodal ministry and it releases funds for the operation of the scheme. At the same time, Department of Food and Public Distribution, Ministry of Consumer Affairs releases the foodgrains allotment.