Govt notifies fresh guidelines for issuance of ration cards, licenses for Fair Price Shops

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Government of Jammu and Kashmir has notified fresh guidelines for issuance of ration cards, licenses of Fair Price Shops, ration permits and related issues under Public Distribution System.

A Statutory Order in this regard, called as the “Jammu and Kashmir Targeted Public Distribution System (Control) Order 2023” has been issued by the Department of Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs, Government of J&K, which comes into force at once.

As per the order, the Government will issue ration cards to the households who fulfill the conditions for getting the same as per the policy and instructions issued from time to time and fall within the criteria prescribed in rule 3 of the J&K Food Security Rules 2021.

However, specific card or permit may be issued to the inmates or destitute homes, convents, Ashrams, orphanages or like establishments for availing food grains, if any, decided to be distributed to them under National food Security Act or specific scheme by the Government without reference to the term `household’ as defined in the Rules.

Tehsil Supply Officer/Area Inspector will be authorized for issuance or modification of ration card within his rationing area. For a new ration card or modification in the existing one or any ration card related service, application by the domicile of J&K has to be presented directly by the head of the household to the concerned TSO. If any adult member wants to delete his name from the card, the consent of the other member is not necessary.

Also specifying the time limit for issuing ration card, the Government guidelines make it clear that after verification and inclusion of data in the Ration Card Management System, the Tehsil Supply Officer will issue a ration card within 30 days.

The ration card holder will draw his entitled quantity of food grains from a fair price shop after verifying his identity through the electronic point of sale device or such instrument installed in the shop. In case of a card holder, who is bedridden or is above 65 years of age, or differently abled or not in a position to visit the fair price shop for himself and has no other adult member listed in such ration card, such person can nominate any other person to draw the food grains as per procedure provided by the nominee policy already notified by the J&K Government.

To cater the need of rationees, new Fair Price Shops (FPS) will be opened in each Panchayat/Municipal Ward/ULB as far as possible and based on population of that area.

The fresh guidelines say that only a local unemployed educated (at least matriculate) individual in the age group of 18 to 45 years, will be eligible to apply for a Fair Price Shops license. He should be domicile of J&K and voter of the respective Panchayat/Municipal Ward/ULB.

Further, a person holding a post of profit in the Government or the position of Sarpanch, Panch, Ward member, member of District Development Council/Block Development Council, MLA/MP or an elected member of municipal bodies, shall not be eligible for allotment of a fair price shop.

No Fair Price Shop shall have more than 1500 souls and less than 200 ration cards in rural areas and not more than 2000 souls and less than 300 ration cards in urban areas. Upper limit of number of ration cards and souls in a FPS and their distance limits shall be indicative and same will be appropriately considered during the process of rationalization.

The licensee of Fair Price Shop shall maintain and display a notice board at conspicuous place outside the shop and a price and stock display board inside the shop, which shall contain information on daily basis regarding category wise number of number of ration cards, entitlement of food grains and other commodities, prices, timing of shop, stock, etc

The licensee of Fair Price Shop shall maintain and display a notice board at conspicuous place outside the shop and a price and stock display board inside the shop, which shall contain information on daily basis regarding category wise number of number of ration cards, entitlement of food grains and other commodities, prices, timing of shop, stock, etc

The license for a Fair Price Shop shall be issued for a period of five years and will be renewed after every five years or till the licensee reaches the age of 65 years. An existing deal shall retain the dealership of one Fair price Shop only. In case he has already attained the age of 65 years, his license shall be transferred to his dependent family member, provided the latter is eligible under the new provisions.

No licensee shall go or remain on strike at any point of time. Any strike declared or commenced whether before or after the issuance of this order shall be deemed illegal and invite action.

In case a licensee is found indulging in black marketing/ overcharging/under scaling/ diversion/adulteration or some case is established against him after proper enquiry, a penalty to the tune of Rs 3000 per quintal will be recovered from him besides the punishment as per the Act. For second such offence, his license will be cancelled besides the penalty.

FPS license shall be suspended or cancelled if the dealer fails to do transaction through Electronic Point of Sale machine/fails to provide commodities to the beneficiaries/ make false entries in register/ does not keep the shop open throughout the month during stipulated days and time/etc.

In case the licensee has resigned or his license is cancelled or suspended, the Licensing Authority will ensure ration distribution through adjoining Fair Price Shop dealer of the same area.

Further, for the purpose of obtaining food grains, welfare institutions, hostels and other Government recognized institution may apply to the Assistant Director concerned who will issue ration permits after verification and recommendation of the concerned Deputy Commissioner to such establishments. (Daily excelsior

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