Odisha points out shortcomings in proposed food security bill

December 10th, 2011 - 12:45 am ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh Bhubaneswar, Dec 9 (IANS) Pointing out several shortcomings in the proposed Food Security Bill, 2011, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Friday urged the central government to have a re-look at it before it is introduced in parliament.

In a latter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Patnaik said the concept of food security as a matter of right for the poor is welcome, but the proposed bill leaves too many gaps to achieve the objectives that it hopes to.

He questioned the cap on the coverage under targeted public distribution system (TPDS) of 75 percent in rural areas and 50 percent in urban areas as proposed in the bill.

“It is felt that these limits should not be fixed under the act but as per the socio-economic survey conducted by the government from time to time. The limits, if any, should be dynamic with annual updating based on the above survey,” Patnaik wrote.

Objecting to the proposal that the central government would fix the poverty ratios in consultation with the Planning Commission without involving the state, Patnaik said it is a clear violation of the federal structure envisaged in the constitution.

Patnaik has also in his letter said the central government should bear the entire capital cost to put up the infrastructure and facilities. He also wanted a provision in the bill to put a cap on the financial liability of the state at ten percent for any scheme formulated to implement the law.

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