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Cabinet approves extension of sugar subsidy scheme for poor by 2 years

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narender Modi on Thursday approved the extension of the sugar subsidy scheme for Antyodya Anna Yojna (AAY) families distributed through the Public Distribution Scheme (PDS) for two more years till March 31, 2026.

Under the scheme, the Central government gives a subsidy of Rs 18.50 per kg per month of sugar to AAY families of participating states. The approval is expected to extend benefits of more than Rs 1,850 crore during the period of 15th Finance Commission (2020-21 to 2025-26). The scheme is expected to benefit about 1.89 crore AAY families in the country.

“The scheme facilitates access of sugar to the poorest of the poor and adds energy to their diet so that their health improves,” an official statement said.

The Government of India is already giving free ration under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojna (PM-GKAY). Sale of ‘Bharat Atta’, ‘Bharat Dal’ and tomatoes and onions at affordable and fair prices are the measures to ensure sufficient food in the plate of the citizens beyond PM-GKAY, the statement added.

So far, about 3 lakh tonnes of Chana dal and about 2.4 lakh tonnes of Atta have already been sold, benefiting ordinary consumers. Thus, availability of subsidised dal, atta and sugar have completed the food for a common citizen of India, fulfiling Modi ki Guarantee of ‘Food for All, Nutrition for All’, the statement added.

With this approval, the government will continue giving subsidy to the participating states for distribution of sugar to AAY families through PDS at the rate of one kg per family per month. States have the responsibility to procure and distribute sugar.

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