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Food department signs pact with WFP for PDS

Under the MoU, the department of food and public distribution will facilitate the WFP TPDS computerization programme.

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Apr 20, 2012, 08.14 PM IST
NEW DELHI: Department of food and public distribution has signed a memorandum of understanding with the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) for scaling up computerization of Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) within the country.

Under the MoU, the department of food and public distribution will facilitate the WFP TPDS computerization programme. It will also provide the necessary information and advise on the programme as well as the selection of States for implementation.

The WFP programme will assist the selected States to expedite their TPDS computerisation programmes and will complement the ongoing efforts being made for modernisation of TPDS by the Government of India and State Governments.

"Modernisation including computerisation of TPDS in the country is enabling timely allocation of foodgrains, biometric identification of beneficiaries, recording of transactions at the fair price shops, tracking of foodgrains, etc," said a senior food ministry official.

The programme has brought about a perceptible change in targeting of PDS, elimination of over 2.48 crore bogus/ineligible ration cards and resultant saving of foodgrains.

The joint programme provides for development and implementation of additional TPDS Pilot projects based on the WFP model in Rayagada district of Odisha where the state government is implementing a pilot project to strengthen the TPDS through use of new ration cards against smart cards with point-of-sale devices in fair price shops, deduplication of ineligible cards, etc.

"A project covering Bhubaneswar, Odisha is under preparation by WFP and additional pilot projects would be implemented in consultation with the States, Central Government and WFP. The selection of States under the MoU would include those which have not fully implemented computerization of TPDS," the official said.

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