Delhi implements food security scheme

New Delhi, July 26 (IANS) Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit Friday formally announced rolling out the food security scheme which would benefit 5.10 lakh poor families in its first phase of implementation.

"Delhi would become the first state in the country to implement the food security scheme as our government is committed to make Delhi hunger-free at the earliest," Dikshit told reporters after the launch.

She said that the scheme would cover 73.5 lakh people or 44 percent of the total population. More than 32 lakh people belonging to most vulnerable households would be brought under it with its formal launch Aug 20, the birth anniversary of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi.

Though the scheme will be launched Aug 20, the beneficiaries will start getting entitled food grains from Sep 1.

"It is a historic scheme by the union government and we will implement it in all our capabilities," she said.

The beneficiaries will get wheat at Rs.2 per kg, rice at Rs.3 per kg and coarse grain at Re.1 per kg.

The Delhi government has appointed a committee under the chairmanship of food and civil supplies minister Haroon Yusuf to work out the scheme details.

Dikshit said that more families would be included in the scheme that revolves around the senior-most woman in a household.

Homeless people, daily wage-earners, rag-pickers, people living in resettlement colonies and slum clusters will be eligible for the benefit under the scheme, described as a "game changer" for the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance-II.

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