Public Distribution System (TPDS), Other Welfare Schemes (OWS), to meet emergency
      situations arising out of unexpected crop failure, natural disasters, festivals, etc., and to use the
      foodgrain stock in the Central Pool for market intervention to augment supply so as to help
      moderate the open market prices.
            The stock of foodgrains (rice and wheat) in the Central Pool as in September, 2018 was
      590.86 lakh MT (205.77 lakh MT of rice and 385.09 lakh MT of wheat). which is
      correspondingly higher than required as per the norms.
      National Food Security
            In order to further strengthen the commitment to food security of the people, Government of
      India enacted the National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA), which came into force from 2013.
      The Act aims to provide for food and nutritional security in human life cycle approach, by
      ensuring access to adequate quantity of quality food at affordable prices to people to live with
      dignity. The Act marks a paradigm shift in approach to food security— from welfare to a rights
      based one.
            The Act provides for coverage of upto 75 per cent of the rural population and upto 50 per
      cent of the urban population for receiving subsidized foodgrains under Targeted Public
      Distribution System, thus covering about two-thirds of the population. This coverage for
      receiving highly subsidized foodgrains is under two categories—households covered under the
      Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) and the remaining households as priority households. AAY was
      launched in 2000 to provide focus on food security to the poorest of the poor, and covers 2.5
      crore households. Such households are entitled under the Act to receive 35 kg. of foodgrains per
      households per month, at ₹ 1/2/3 per kg. for coarse grains/wheat/rice. Priority households are
      entitled to receive 5 kg. of foodgrains per person per month at the above mentioned highly
      subsidized prices.
            The Act also contains provisions for setting up of grievance redressal mechanism at the
      district and state levels. Separate provisions have also been made for ensuring transparency and
            NFSA is now being implemented in all the states/UTs covering about 80.55 crore
      beneficiaries, against intended coverage of 81.34 crore people. In Chandigarh, Puducherry and
      urban areas of Dadra and Nagar Haveli, the Act is being implemented in the cash transfer mode
      under which food subsidy is being transferred into the bank accounts of beneficiaries who then
      have a choice to buy foodgrains from open market.
      End-to-End Computerisation
            Department of Food and Public Distribution is implementing a Plan Scheme on ‘End-to-End
      Computerisation’ of TPDS Operations on cost sharing basis with states/UTs with funding
      requirement of ₹ 884.07 crore, out of which Government of India’s share is ₹ 489.37 crore and
      that of states/UTs is ₹ 394.70 crore. It has become more important after coming into force of the
      National Food Security Act, under which prices of foodgrains to be distributed through the
      TPDS are highly subsidised. The scheme has been extended up to 2019. Its key activities
      include: (a) digitization of beneficiary database to enable correct identification of beneficiaries;
      removal of bogus cards and better targeting of food subsidies; (b) online allocation of foodgrains
      to bring transparency in allocation of foodgrains, upto the fair price shops level; and (c)