Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Jun 17:
Chief minister Naveen Patnaik today asked the Food Supply and Consumer Welfare department to revamp the Odisha State Civil Supplies Corporation (OSCSC).
Presiding over a review meeting on the yearly performance of the department at the State Secretariat here, the chief minister said since the responsibility of the OSCSC, which was earlier limited to Public Distribution System (PDS), had gone up manifold over the years, there is a need for a revamp of the Corporation.
He asked the department to form a committee under the Development Commissioner to decide on the modalities of the restructuring of the corporation.
It was revealed at the meeting that Odisha, being the fourth state the country in terms of procurement of paddy after Punjab, Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, has procured 31.95 lakh metric tonnes of paddy by June 10 this year and paid Rs 2573 crore to the farmers.
He directed the department to implement Paddy Procurement Automation System (P-PAS) in mandis in all 314 blocks by 2017-17 kharif paddy procurement season.
While the system is currently implemented in 60 mandis, a target has been set to implement the system in 100 mote mandis in the current kharif season.
The chief minister also asked the department to take steps to streamline the paddy procurement process in all mandis by utilising the funds of Primary Agricultural Cooperative Societies (PACS) and Regulated Marketing Committees (RMCs) and proper storage of the procured paddy in the godowns.
Stating that food security is one of the most important jobs of the state government, Patnaik asked the department to discharge their duty with utmost transparency and responsibility.
He advised the department to expedite the process of selection of eligible beneficiaries and discard ineligible beneficiaries from the list and provide error-free PDS cards to the genuine beneficiaries as per the provisions of the National Food Security Act.
He also advised the department to take necessary steps for a third-party audit of the PDS system and automation of PDS outlets.
Besides, the chief minister stressed strengthening of the enforcement system to curb black marketing and regulate the price of essential commodities as per the Essential Commodities Act.
Food Supply and Consumer Welfare minister Sanjay Dasburma said his department will take necessary steps to supply subsidised rice to 4,72,000 students residing in SC/ST hostels after the implementation of the new National Food Security Act.
Among others, chief secretary, development commissioner, additional chief secretary, Finance, principal secretary, Food Supply and Consumer Welfare and senior officials of the concerned department were present at the meeting.