Annapurna Scheme {अन्नपूर्णा योजना}

Updated on Aug 01, 2020

Objectives

The Annapurna scheme targets giving food security for senior citizens. It aims at fulfilling the food requirements of the senior citizens who are also eligible for the National Old Age Pension Scheme. Under this scheme, the beneficiary will receive food grains of 10 kg every month. However, the number of recipients who will be benefitted under this scheme will be for example twenty per cent of the total people who are qualified to get pension under the National Old Age Pension Scheme in all the states and Union Territories.

Background

NOAPS or the National Old Age Pension Scheme was initiated in 1995 which aims at giving pension of INR 75 for the 68.81 lakh destitute, who are of 65 years old and above. Therefore, twenty per cent of 68.81 lakh destitute will mean 13.762 people will be eligible for the Annapurna scheme. The beneficiaries will be available for the programme according to the accessibility of funds and as per the regulations by the Authority of State. 

It is the responsibility of the State Government to provide the goods in the allocated districts based on the availability of the products and funds. This also includes the identification of the beneficiary, which is a necessary task and must be done carefully.

Eligibility

  • The beneficiary must qualify these following terms to be eligible for the scheme:
  • The age of the beneficiary must be 65 years old or above.
  • The applicant should be “Destitute” which means that he or she should not be getting a little or no usual means of survival of his or her personal source of earnings or by financial help from any family member or other resources. To decide destitution, the criteria now are in force in the states or union territories can also be followed.
  • The applicant must not be a receipting of pension schemes under the NOAPS or the State Pension Scheme.

Implementing Agencies

For state level, the Department of Public Distribution and for the District level the Zilla Panchayat/ Collector/District Magistrate/Chief Executive Officer etc. will be responsible for the implementation and regulation of the scheme. 

The State Food and Civil Supplies Department will have to buy the food grains from the Food Corporations of India by paying the economical cost & must confirm that FCI is supplying the food grains to the allocated districts as per the rules and regulations. 

The CEO or Collector appointed by the Authority of the States will be responsible for the collection of the food grains and distribution for the same by the Target Public Distribution System. 

Identification of the Beneficiaries

It is the sole responsibility of the Gram Panchayats to spread the information and do publicity of the scheme among the people. The Gram Panchayats are supposed to disseminate information about the scheme’s procedure. After that, the Gram Sabhas will choose the beneficiaries and give the list to the Gram Panchayats. Then the Gram Panchayat will allocate Entitlement cards to the selected beneficiaries during the meeting of Gram Sabhas. The Municipality in the respective areas is responsible for the implementation of the scheme in their fields. The state government will contact either the Gram Panchayat or the Municipality for the identification of the beneficiaries in the allocated areas.

Budget

The Annapurna scheme was launched on April 1st, 2000, with a budget of INR 50 crore. According to the Finance Minister’s budget speech in 1999-2000, the number of people who will be benefitted under this scheme has now been increased to 20% of the Old Age Pensioner in the entire state. The central government will provide the funds in as a single instalment for the State Food and Civil Supplies Department which will then collaborate with the Food Corporation of India for distributing the food grains as per the allocated districts in the state. However, the funds will be released after the receipt submission by the state government. 

Evaluation

The state governments are required to send Quarterly Progress Reports. The chosen districts are supposed to send Monthly Progress reports every month to the State Government Authorities, and the State Government will address it further in every quarter. It is the responsibility of the state government to make a monitoring committee for the evaluation for implementation of the scheme. A district-level committee will be constituted of the regular assessment of the project.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is Annapurna scheme?

The Annapurna scheme targets giving food security for senior citizens. It aims at fulfilling the food requirements of the senior citizens who are also eligible for the National Old Age Pension Scheme.

Q. What are the benefits under the scheme?

Under this scheme, the beneficiary will receive food grains of 10 kg every month. However, the number of recipients who will be benefitted under this scheme will be for example twenty per cent of the total people who are qualified to get pension under the National Old Age Pension Scheme in all the states and Union Territories.

Q. When was this scheme launched?

The scheme was launched on April 1st, 2000.

Q. Who launched this scheme?

This is a centrally sponsored scheme for the old age people of the country.

Q. What is NOAPS?

NOAPS or the National Old Age Pension Scheme was initiated in 1995 which aims at giving pension of INR 75 for the 68.81 lakh destitute, who are of 65 years old and above.

Q. Who will distribute the food grains?

It is the responsibility of the State Government to provide the goods in the allocated districts based on the availability of the products and funds. This also includes the identification of the beneficiary, which is a necessary task and must be done carefully.

Q. What is the eligibility for the scheme?

The age of the beneficiary must be 65 years old or above, and the applicant should be “Destitute” which means that he or she should not be getting a little or no usual means of survival of his or her personal source of earnings or by financial help from any family member or other resources. To decide destitution, the criteria now are in force in the states or union territories can also be followed.


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WRITTEN BYVarsha Verma

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