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A costly decision

Extension of PMGKAY should have been avoided

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PMGKY | Business Standard Editorial Comment | ration quota

Business Standard Editorial Comment  |  Mumbai 



The Union government’s decision to extend the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY) for another three months is difficult to justify. Under the scheme, 5 kg of rice or wheat is provided free of cost to eligible beneficiaries. The programme was launched in April 2020 during the initial phase of the pandemic. The move to provide free food grains was rightly applauded then because it provided much-needed support to the most vulnerable sections of the population at a time when economic activity came to a virtual halt, owing to the pandemic-induced lockdown. Its subsequent extensions were also justified on account of successive waves of the pandemic, which affected economic activity in various parts of the country. However, given that the economy has now opened up completely, the government should have stopped what was essentially an emergency measure.

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First Published: Thu, September 29 2022. 22:09 IST

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