Bhubaneswar: With repetitive approaches to the Centre for enhancement of the number of beneficiaries in the State under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) yielding no result, the Odisha Government has decided to introduce its own version of Food Security Act starting October 2.
Announcing the move, Patnaik today said 34.44 lakh people excluded from the NFSA will be benefited by the scheme.
“Large numbers of poor people in the State have not been included under the NFSA since the Centre is implementing the scheme as per the 2011 Census. Despite repetitive approaches to add the 34.44 lakh left out beneficiaries, the Centre is yet to take a call on this,” said the CM.
He further said in 2014, the State Government had promised to implement its own food security scheme in the State; accordingly, it will launch Food Security Act from Gandhi Jayanti on October 2.
The scheme will benefit all the poor people in the State, Patnaik added.
Earlier in June, the Odisha Government refused to implement the Centre’s flagship health scheme Ayushman Bharat National Health Protection Mission and decided to implement its own scheme ‘Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana’ claiming that it will cover more beneficiaries in the State.
Meanwhile, both BJP and Congress criticized the state government’s move alleging it to be a political agenda of BJD ahead of 2019 general elections.
BJP Spokesperson Samir Mohanty questioned, “If the Government is so concerned for the NFSA left out poor, why it announced the scheme so late? That too just before the general elections?” This shows the double standard of the Odisha Government, he added.
Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) president Niranjan Patnaik said CM Naveen announced the scheme only to garner more votes in the upcoming elections.