Four placed under suspension over diversion of food grains in Punjab

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Department maintains ‘no condonation stance over malpractices, says Minister

Chandigarh, July 18, 2019: Ordering immediate suspension of an Assistant Food Supply Officer and three inspectors of department of Food Supply, Bharat Bhushan Ashu, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Minister Punjab said that the department maintains ‘no condonation stance over malpractices’.

He said that Food &Civil Supplies department deals with distribution of food grains to the economically weaker households. Any attempt of pilferage or diversion in the food grains for poor cannot be overlooked. It is not just dereliction in duty but it is grossly unethical, opined Ashu.
FSM informed that Sumit Kumar posted as Food &Civil Supplies inspector at Gurdaspur, Jagtar Singh at Hoshiarpur, Khushwant Singh inspector at Ludhiana and Jaswinder Singh, AFSO, Ludhiana have been suspended over fabricating glaring deficiency in distribution of food grains.

Enlisting the initiatives introduced to usher fairness in the system, Bharat Bhushan Ashu said that, End-to-End Computerization of Public Distribution Operations has been brought about, with real time monitoring system which can be done on the portal epos.punjab.gov.in. Besides, the distribution of food grains is through Electronic Point of Sale (e-PoS) devices equipped with biometrics and Iris scanners for the identification of the beneficiaries. The entire database is seeded with Aadhaar numbers to ensure genuine delivery system. Added to this is the fact that distribution of wheat is in standard/ sealed bags of 30kg at the Fair Price Shops(FPS) which are now equipped with the electronic weighing scales. This is further strengthened by conducting distribution in the presence of a Government official and the local Vigilance Committees. For the purpose of Social Audit and for ensuring proper disbursal of food grains amongst the beneficiaries, the State has constituted Vigilance Committees at FPS/Village, Block and District Level, said he and added that this is supported by a robust grievance redressal system of the department.

He said that such paraphernalia in place reflects the intent of government to ensure fairness in the system and has helped to nail the culprits. FSM informed that all the officials of the department of Food &Civil Supplies have been directed to ensure that the food grains distributed through Public Distribution System are ‘up to the mark both in Quantity and Quality’ and any attempt to dilute the same would be dealt unsparingly.

Date: 
Thursday, July 18, 2019