Bhubaneswar, Sept 17 (LocalWire): As many as 18 lakh ineligible beneficiaries of National Food Security Act have come to the fore as the cardholders have failed to meet with the 15 September deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar with ration cards.
The Aadhar linking was mandatory in the state as per the Centre’s policy of ‘one nation- one card’.
Its primary objective was inter-state portability of ration cards and to weed out the ghost and bogus beneficiaries of the food security scheme, putting brakes on the alleged pilferage of ration, said Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain.
‘It’s too early to conclude that all of cardholders are ghost or bogus beneficiaries as we have received reports of Aaddhar linking process affected due to poor and erratic internet connectivity in some places.
However, 18 lakh cards have not been linked and are therefore not genuine. Still the department has asked district authorities to furnish reports of Aadhar linking process affected due to unavailability of internet facilities,’ the minister Swain said.
There is also probability of some of these 18 lakh cardholders not having Aaadhar cards. There is also likelihood that the cardholders are bereft of eligibility.
That’s why they shied away from getting their cards linked with Aadhar, he added.
Authorities of all the 30 districts have been urged to ascertain the exact factors for the cardholders not being covered under Aadhar linkage, he said.
3.07 crore NFSA cards were linked with Aadhar. Of the 90,13,369 families given NFSA subsidized ration in the state, 88,28,419 families have so far got their ration cards linked with Aadhar,
The state government had earlier detected 2 lakh ‘dead’ beneficiaries. The names of more than one lakh dead beneficiaries have so far been struck off the list. The names are being dropped in a phased manner after further scrutiny.
The process to strike off 2 lakh dead beneficiaries will come to an end shortly. Once the process is over, the ration that was being given away against the dead can be saved and fresh quota of eligible beneficiaries would reap NFSA benefits, said a senior official of the state government.