ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Public Distribution SystemSubscribe to Public Distribution System

Food Security and COVID-19: Why India’s Public Distribution System Requires an Overhaul

In light of the ongoing pandemic and India's crumbling economy, what are the factors that we should pay heed to if we're to mitigate the food insecurity that India's migrant population faces?

A Conundrum of Efficiency And Inclusion: Aadhaar and Fair Price Shops

Instead of looking at Aadhaar as a technological “fix” to the problems of welfare delivery systems, we need to focus on a more nuanced approach to administrative reform. The authors investigate use of Aadhaar in Fair Price Shops in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.

Troubles with Cash Food Subsidy

A pilot project of cash food subsidy to replace the public distribution system in Nagri block of Ranchi district in Jharkhand is analysed to highlight the problems experienced by Jharkhand in implementation of cash food subsidy through the direct benefit transfer system in the PDS. Further, the limitations of cash transfer as a means to replace the PDS are highlighted as also the infrastructural and institutional constraints to impose digitalisation in rural Indian conditions.

What Is the Effective Delivery Mechanism of Food Support in India?

The public distribution system is the cornerstone of anti-poverty initiatives in India to address the issue of hunger and malnutrition, but is plagued with leakages and corruption. Though several possible reasons account for these problems, one factor that is generally overlooked is the lack of assessment of the preference of the beneficiaries in terms of product portfolio, selection, and delivery mechanisms. Through a mixed methods analysis across Bihar, Odisha and (eastern) Uttar Pradesh, this paper assesses the factors explaining the diversity in the preference for the delivery mechanism. What would be a straightforward choice problem among delivery mechanisms turns out to be far more intricate when mediated by contextual heterogeneity and unequal power relations at different levels. The results highlight the centrality of demand and build a case for demand assessment in improving the effectiveness of the system.

Millets in the Indian Plate

Millets can play a role in providing nutrition security as they are rich in various macro and micronutrients, and can help to fight various non-communicable diseases. Hence, a suggestion was made to include them in the basket of goods provided through the public distribution system. The findings of this article suggest that, with the present level of production, millets can be provided in some states of India which have culturally grown as well as consumed them. However, scaling this policy to the national level may not be possible unless rigorous measures are undertaken to improve production as well as consumer acceptability.

Aadhaar Failures: A Tragedy of Errors

Several instances of practical difficulties that people across India have faced in accessing welfare schemes show the magnitude of the problems inherent in the Aadhaar project.

Credibility and Portability?

Examining the Centralised Online Real-time Electronic Public Distribution System reforms introduced by the Government of Chhattisgarh to understand the processes and conditions under which such reforms strengthen accountability and affect the delivery of public services, it is found that while earlier reforms have been successful, the contribution of CORE PDS has been useful but limited. A significant finding was that technological fixes for social protection programmes are only feasible insofar as they work within the political logic of the context in question. CORE PDS reforms could not address the issues of power imbalances between shop owners and cardholders which continue to shape interactions between them. Introducing transparency, accountability and quasi-market reforms in this context offered limited possibilities in what they could achieve.

Democracy and Violence in India

India: Democracy and Violence edited by Samir Kumar Das; OUP, 2015; pp i-viii+258, ₹ 995.

Food Security

Bihar's public distribution system used to be one of the worst in India, but the system has improved significantly from 2011 onwards. The National Food Security Act, backed early on by the political leadership, enabled the state to include the bulk of the rural population in this improved system. However, there is still a long way to go in ensuring that the system is reliable, transparent and corruption-free.

PDS and the Rise of NCDs in Rural India

Is there a connection between the public distribution system (PDS) and the increasing reports on the high incidences of Type II diabetes and cardiovascular diseases in rural India and among the poor in urban India? Why should these non-communicable diseases (NCDs) normally associated with...

Pages

Back to Top