‘One nation-one ration -one election-one leader….wait’: Mamata demands free ration for 1.3 billion Indians – Times Now

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee&nbsp

Key Highlights

  • Mamata extends free ration benefit for state food scheme beneficiaries till June 2021
  • Mamata demands free ration for 1.3 billion Indians
  • Mamata doesn’t commit to One Nation One Ration and claims that she will wait for more details

Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has announced free ration to people, beneficiaries of the state food scheme ‘Khadya Sathi’ till June 2021. This move has been brought about in a bid to outdo the ‘PM Garib Kalyan Anno Yojna’, a scheme of free ration covering 80 crore Indian people of a certain income bracket, now extended till November 2020, as announced by PM Modi on Tuesday to help the nation in its battle against the ongoing pandemic. The state ‘Khadya Sathi’ scheme covers more than 4 crore people in the state who used to get subsidized ration, 5 kg food grain at Rs 2 per kg, per person. But after the Covid-19 outbreak, Mamata Banerjee had made it free and had also included another 6 crore people in the state, not directly under the scheme but were given free ration.

“Centre takes food grains from FCI but we take it from our farmers, the quality of the food grain we give is of better quality. We are not sure if the central scheme will continue or how long, thus we have decided to extend free ration to the Khadya Sathi beneficiaries till June 2021 so that no one stays hungry in the state. Another 6 crore who are now getting the free ration and will continue to get till September as announced previously, we will decide for them after September,” said Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday after holding a cabinet meeting

She also alleged that the central scheme of free ration covers 6.01 crore people of Bengal and not all. She termed it discrimination and urged the Prime Minister to extend it to all. She also demanded the central free ration benefit be given to 1.3 billion Indians across the country and not selectively. The ‘PM Garib Kalyan Anna Yojna’ assures 5kg wheat or rice per beneficiary and 1kg chana per beneficiary family.

Reacting on the ‘One Nation One Ration’ proposal by PM Modi, Mamata Banerjee said she will wait to understand the details of the scheme and the practicality of it. Previously she had objected to the same proposal and had never implemented in Bengal. She termed such initiatives “one nation one ration, one nation one election, one leader one nation” as confusing and demanded definite benefits to reach people for the time being.

She lashed out at the Centre over ‘PM Garib Kalyan Rojgar Yojna’ not including the state of West Bengal. She cast aspersion on the form and merits of the scheme, adding that it lacks clarity as to how the scheme will benefit the migrants and if there is any financial assistance for the workers who have returned to their native lands in distress, during the lockdown. West Bengal goes to polling for the all-important assembly elections in 2021. The fight is principally between TMC and BJP. But for the time being, the fight is between the central food scheme and State food scheme.

Check the latest facts on Covid-19 here. Times Fact ‘India Outbreak Report’ by TIMES NETWORK and Protiviti is a comprehensive analysis that highlights the impact of the pandemic in India and projects the possible number of active cases in the weeks ahead.

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