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Following the grain trail: on India's public distribution system -Jean Dreze

prime example of this problem. By mid-2016, the PDS in Jharkhand had greatly improved, partly due to a series of reforms inspired by Chhattisgarh’s experience and intensified under the National Food Security Act (NFSA). Instead of completing these reforms, for instance by removing private dealers, the Jharkhand government made Aadhaar-based biometric authentication compulsory for PDS users. The consequences, documented in a recent study publishe

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Introducing ragi in the PDS is fraught with challenges -Mamata Pradhan and Devesh Roy

consumption, since millet is a naturally nutrient-dense food, making it available through the PDS should enable the poor to have higher consumption leading to improved nutrition. Though the National Food Security Act (NFSA) provided for disbursing millets through the PDS as well, the only state that has introduced it in the system is Karnataka. Globally, one of the most commonly applied policies to improve nutrition among the poor is a food subsid

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Reetika Khera, Associate Professor of Economics at IIT-Delhi, interviewed by Surabhi (The Hindu Business Line)

adhaar. * Are interventions for providing social security still lacking? On December 31, 2016, the Prime Minister had announced that maternity entitlements, the fourth component of the National Food Security Act 2013, would finally be operationalised. A whole year has passed and the programme is yet to kick off in any meaningful way. Even the guidelines that have been formulated, attempt to dilute the provision in the Act (?6,000 per child).

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Aadhaar and Food Security in Jharkhand: Pain without Gain? -Jean Dreze, Nazar Khalid, Reetika Khera and Anmol Somanchi

-Economic and Political Weekly Aadhaar-based biometric authentication is now compulsory for most users of the public distribution system in Jharkhand. Based on a recent household survey, this paper examines various issues related to this measure, including exclusion problems, transaction costs, and its impact on corruption. The findings raise serious questions about the appropriateness of this technology for rural Jharkhand. Please click here to read more.

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Maternity entitlements on hold: How the government has undermined women's and children's rights -Jean Dreze

ibly aimed at sweetening the demonetisation pill. What he did not mention is that maternity entitlements of Rs 6,000 per child had been a legal right of all Indian women since 2013 under the National Food Security Act (NFSA), and that his government had done nothing about it until then. Nevertheless things started moving after the PM spoke, or so it seemed. The finance ministry made a modest allocation of Rs 2,700 crore for maternity benefits in th

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Aadhaar Of Injustice -Anjali Bhardwaj & Amrita Johri

tive accountability measures. There is overwhelming evidence to show that mandatory linking of Aadhaar to ration cards has led to large-scale exclusions from benefits guaranteed under the National Food Security Act. Those who are not enrolled in the Aadhaar database are unable to apply for ration cards. Even if someone has an Aadhaar number, but it is not “linked”, benefits are denied. Finally, in states like Jharkhand and Rajasthan whe

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Farmer-politics is a self-defeating exercise in today's India - Roshan Kishore

nputs and assured buying at MSPs. Already irrigated areas were chosen for these incentives. To put it crudely, the rich peasant in Punjab-Haryana and Western Uttar Pradesh had to be bribed to provide Food Security for the country. Both these factors have weakened considerably today. Even the poorest farm-worker in the village knows that wanting to own a part of his village land is not the best aspiration to have. He would rather work as a construct

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Civil society activists allege another hunger death in Jharkhand due to failure of aadhaar-based biometric authentication

2017 and she did not get her pension for the months of November and December. Denial of ration Etwariya’s family was denied their monthly entitlement of 25 kg of grain under the National Food Security Act for three months preceding her death. In October, Usha Devi’s fingerprint could not be authenticated in the Aadhaar-based biometric Point of Sale (PoS) machine at the local ration shop and she was told by the ration dealer to come

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Obscenity of hunger deaths -Jayati Ghosh

ct killer; medically, hunger weakens the body such that illnesses can take over. The point is that these were all very poor people and they could not get what they were entitled to under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) because the government imposed restrictions in the form of biometric authentication and Aadhaar-seeding of all ration cards. In Jharkhand, for example, the Aadhaar-based authentication system was made compulsory for the issue of f

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How PDS can be made effective through better governance -Anjani Kumar and Seema Bathla

ergence and making India’s two important missions—food and nutrition security—successful in a short time. New Delhi: India’s public distribution system (PDS) is the largest Food Security programme in the world, which covers nearly 60% of the population and costs Rs 1.45 trillion—close to 1.4% of the national income. PDS has often been criticised for its structure, incessant corruption and leakages, and inclusion and ex

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