WHAT IS PDS?
● Public Distribution System (PDS) is a poverty alleviation programme which contributes
towards the social welfare of the people by providing essential commodities like
rice,wheat, sugar and kerosene at reasonable prices.
● PDS is considered as principal instrument in the hands of State Governments for
providing safety net to the poor against the spiralling rise in prices of essential
commodities thus it's a boon to the people living below the poverty line.
● Evolution of public distribution of grains in India had its origin in the 'rationing' system
introduced by the British during the World War II. In view of the fact that the rationing
system and its successor, the public distribution system (PDS) has played an important
role in attaining higher levels of the household food security and completely eliminating
the threats of famines from the face of the country.
● The PDS seeks to provide to the beneficiaries two cereals, rice and wheat and four
essential commodities viz. sugar, edible oil, soft coke and kerosene oil. However,
state governments, which actually manage the system at the ground level, are
exhorted to add other essential commodities like pulses, salt, candles, matchboxes,
ordinary clothes, school text books/copies and the like. Supply of additional items
through PDS is especially relevant in interior areas, which are away from markets.
General Problems With Public
• It is not in reach of every consumer. About 73% did not get any food from PDS.
• Stocks arrived in FPS are not always on time hence consumer have to depend on
• The grain won’t reach to FPS but goes to open market for selling, getting the
margins which benefits the middle men that is FPS owners and officials of the
• The PDS system leads to the creation of illegal hoarding and inappropriate
storage of food grains to inflate market values.
• This government policy aims at subsidizing price of commodities lower than
minimum support price. With the alarming inflation, the minimum support price will
bound to increase. The subsidy will henceforth increase.
Fair Price Shops – A major problem
Fair price shops are not viable. Most shops do not display stock statements, and bill books are poorly
maintained. Issuance of bills for the transactions undertaken is done rarely and stock books are improperly
maintained. Card holders complained about the FPS owners charging higher prices for commodities and
receiving less quantity than what they are entitled to. Shops use unfair practices in distribution such as
adulteration, improper weighing, etc.
FPS OWNERS DO BLACKMARKETING THROUGH VARIOUS WAYS:
He fools illiterate consumers by selling them less quantity of ration through taking
their thumb prints for different quantities.
Adulteration is the most common thing which is done by FPS. Thus compromising with
the nutritional value of ration.
FPS OWNER exchange good quality of ration present in FPS stocks with poor quality of
stocks from market shops, hence earning their profit with this black marketing
They don’t maintain proper report of ration transactions and bribe the food security
They sell the remaining ration of FPS in open market at higher for their own benefits,
thus reducing the government’s subsidy.
The numbers shown by state government for BPL families do not tally with the ration cards issued and also with
the planning commission statistics. Due to this two types of problem arises
- one is the number of ration card holders are less compared to the number of BPL families announced by the
state government. Second is the number of ration cards issued are more
than the real BPL families in the village. In the second case, huge quantity of grains got released
from second but not the concerned but reselling the same at higher margins in market.
PDS is highly corrupt system which is not benefiting the needy- poorest of the poor, as per objective of the
To reduce the filtration of the grains into open market technology usage from go downs – Fair price shop –
consumer mechanism has to be automated.
•rights to purchase ration from any of the FPS rather than allotted fps for helping migrants
Flexibility in FPS
•Central govt. should provide subsidy to state govt. based on the formula and let them decide on the
subsidies for various commodities.Decentralisation of operation
•State govt. can hire a private agency to monitor the PDS process.
•Pds units with maximum connectivity should be periodically felicitated by the
Regular incentives to the
performing pds unit
•Provision for the complaints resistor for the consumer so that they can lodge their
complaints with the authorities directly
HIGH LEVEL DESCRIPTION OF KEY STEPS INVOLVED IN IMPLEMENTING SOLUTION
• Integrating AADHAR CARD of ever family member into a
common e-ration card of family Computerized system at very
fair price shop which
will be linked with the centralized system at every state level.
Government will provide vans that would distribute ration in
Ration will be provided on the basis of number of family
• Packaging unit will be setup in all FCI godowns. Ration will
be packed in standard size packets. CCTV cameras will be
there in every FCI godown. Central will monitor warehouses
vigilance officers and CCTV’s.
Dispatched packed ration from are houses and stocks
reached at every FPS will be electronically monitored by a
central body.• FPS purchase data will be sent to central. Consumers can now
purchase their ration from any FPS.
Consumers will hold power to purchase as much ration as they
want of their allotted ration (just like withdrawing money from
FPS owner will earn his share in form of salary from central
system on the basis of his purchase.
Database of warehouses
Packaging unit in FCI godown
Packed ration Packed ration
Beneficiaries mobile FPS in remote
WAREHOUSE WAREHOUSE Database of all
FPS FPS FPS FPS
E ration card
FPS OWNER BANK FCI account
LEVERAGING GOVERNMENT INFRASTRUCTURE
Gadgets, computers, networks must be installed in the FPS at a much professional level.
A team of engineers and technicians must be appointed. Whenever there is a technical error in the
automated system, the team ought to improvise it as soon as possible.
The vehicles for transportation must be well equipped and well maintained such that in any emergency case
when there is traffic jam or rainfall the ration must not spoil.
TOTAL FUNDING REQUIRED
Central FCI godowns to warehouses
Warehouses to FPS
Setting up computers + e-
AADHAR CARD- A unique identification project which provides a unique id number to all
AAY-Antyodya Ann Yogna
ADULTERATION-Mixing inedibles in food grains so that quantity increase and quality
APL-Above poverty line
BPL-Below poverty line
Cloud technology-Computing concepts that involve a large number of computers conected
through a real-time communication network.
FCI-Food Corporation of India
FPS-Fair price shop
FSB-Food Security Bill
NSS-National Sample Survey,largest organization in India conducting regular socio-
PDS-Public distribution system
RPDS-Revamped Public Distribution System
RTI-Right to information
TPDS-Targeted Public Distribution System