"I think there's just one kind of folks. Folks."
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday, June 30, announced that her government will provide free ration to beneficiaries till June next year, soon after Prime Minister Narendra Modi extended the Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY) till November-end.
"The Centre's ration policy should be to provide ration to each and every one of the 130 crore population of the country," The Indian Express quoted Mamata Banerjee as saying.
The scheme was initially for three months and was supposed to end on June 30. Centre had started to distribute ration among the poor under the scheme after the coronavirus lockdown was announced.
Under the scheme, 80 crore National Food Security Act (NFSA) beneficiaries are provided with an additional 5 kg foodgrain free, over and above their monthly entitlement.
Several state chief ministers and Congress president Sonia Gandhi had written to the Prime Minister for the extension of the scheme.
In a June-22 letter to the PM, Gandhi wrote: "Nearly three months since the country went into a strict lockdown, millions of Indians are at risk of slipping into poverty. The adverse impact on livelihoods has led to chronic food insecurity for both, our urban and rural poor. In light of the current situation, food entitlements should be expanded to address the hunger crisis facing some of the most vulnerable people in the country." The letter further asked for the extension of the PMGKY till September.
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