Indian Journal of Economics and Development
Year : 2017, Volume : 13, Issue : 4 First page : ( 747) Last page : ( 754)
Print ISSN : 2277–5412. Online ISSN : 2322-0430.
Article DOI : 10.5958/2322-0430.2017.00240.2
Public Distribution System in India: Key Issues and Challenges
Food security is essential for a country’s growth and in a nation like India where one-fifth of the population is believed to be undernourished it becomes even more important. The government of India runs the largest food security programme known as Public Distribution System to ensure food security to the masses. Public Distribution System (PDS) ensures food availability and economic access to the beneficiaries through the Fair Price Shops (FPS) by providing foodgrains to them at fairly cheap prices. PDS is run by the coordination of centre and state governments. People accessing PDS for meeting their dietary needs has increased over the years and hence the food and nutritional security of masses has improved. It has made a positive impact on poverty reduction, income transfer and nutritional security considerably. Despite all these certain issues like inaccurate identification of beneficiaries, leakages, inadequate storage capacity, and non-viability of Fair Price Shops plague the system. To counter these problems governments have taken up various reforms over the years which have led to the system becoming more efficient comparatively. PDS is the largest food security programme and its efficient functioning is a must for making India a food secure nation.