By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, July 30, 2018: The Odisha Cabinet headed by chief minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday endorsed a proposal to have the state government’s own version of the path breaking National Food Security Act (NFSA).

Patnaik had earlier announced about the Food Security Act on Saturday to have its Act as the Centre failed to include additional beneficiaries, as demanded by the Odisha government, under the NSFA.

The government has targeted to cover nearly 25 lakh beneficiaries in the first phase of the scheme to be launched from Gandhi Jayanti (October 2),” chief secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi told media persons soon after the cabinet meeting. said,”

Padhi further said 11 auto-inclusion and nine-auto exclusion criteria have been fixed to select or exclude beneficiaries.

The process of enrolment under the scheme will be completed within two months while people have to apply for the scheme at block levels. As per the prescribed food security norms, a beneficiary will be entitled to get 5 Kg of rice at Rs 1 per kg.

“Additional Rs 220 crore would be spent by the State government while Rs 81 crore will be initially spent towards implementing the scheme in the first six months from October,” Padhi informed.

As no budgetary allocation has been made so far to implement the scheme, provision for funds will be made in the supplementary budget, officials said.

State government claimed that nearly 34.44 lakh beneficiaries were left out of the Centre’s scheme which chose beneficiaries as per 2011 census.

“All the eligible people will be included under the scheme. In the first phase, the government has set a target to cover around 25 lakh beneficiaries under the scheme to be implemented from October 2,” Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi told reporters after the meeting.

In the first two quarters of the implementation of the scheme, the state government would shell around Rs 220 crore to meet the expenses. Besides, the requirement of requisite quantity of rice will be met out of the state pool, official sources said.

Notably, the state government took a decision to roll out a food security scheme on the lines of NFSA after nearly 34.44 lakh people from state were excluded from the national scheme that was implemented as per the socio-economic caste census in 2011.

The state government has proposed nine exclusion criteria and 11 auto inclusion criteria for selection of beneficiaries under the food security scheme.

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