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Andhra Pradesh: BJP alleges Rs 20,000 crore scam in rice distribution scheme, demands CBI probe

Amaravati: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Lanka Dinakar on Sunday alleged a scam worth Rs 20,000 crores in the rice distribution scheme in Andhra Pradesh, citing the Right to Information (RTI) and RBI data.
Dinakar cited Right to Information (RTI) and RBI reports to state that there is a "terrible" scam in the rice distribution scheme for BPL families in the state. He also said that it is noteworthy that the largest exports of rice in the country are from Kakinada.
"I intend to pose the following questions to the CM YS Jagan-led YSRCP Government. How many houses are there in the state? How many people live in each household on average? What is the actual number of people below the poverty line in the state? How many rice ration cards are in the state? How many of them are according to the guidelines of the Union Government under the National Food Security (NFSA) Act and how many additional ration cards are given by the State Government? How many eligible poor people are there in the state who have no ration cards?" he asked.
He further said that they have gathered the appropriate information from the RTI Act on the details of the Prime Minister Gareeb Kalyan Yojana for the last seven phases consisting of 21 months.
"As per the available information from the State Government, the ration is provided to 1.45 crore families in the state as beneficiaries below the poverty line, out of which 89,24,640 families consisting of 2,67,10,659 individuals have been covered under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) for PM Gareeb Kalyana Yojana and they receive free rice of 5 Kgs per month for each individual from the Union Government for the last 21 months in addition to the subsidised rice in the Ration Shops," he said.
Lanka Dinakar further said that according to the latest RBI report, 78.80 lakh people are living below the poverty line in the state as per 2011-12 prices and 2.39 crore as per 2004-05 prices.
"But, data reveals the facts as per the 2021-22 census, the population of the state is about 5.30 crore people with an average of 3.9 individuals per family, which means that the total number of households is only 1.37 crore. But the State Government has been showing 4.25 cr beneficiaries from 1.45 cr families. After examining the facts, we can identify that there is a pattern of corruption in accounting for households and individual beneficiaries receiving the subsidised rice," he said.
The BJP leader also levelled a number of other allegations against the YSRCP-led Andhra Pradesh.
"The figures for eligible beneficiaries have been massively inflated to divert the free and subsidised rice from the Centre. The Jagan government is arguing that the aid provided by the centre is not enough, and the state has to spend from its funds," he said.
He further raised suspicion that the unilateral adjustments made by the state government are done for the purpose of "corruption".
"There are doubts over the number of houses provided by the State Government and the number of eligible beneficiaries after observing the RBI report on the poverty in the state. It is a matter of concern that despite such a large number of beneficiaries, the eligible beneficiaries still do not have ration cards," he further said.
Lanka Dinakar also demanded a CBI probe into the matter alleging that the already distributed rice is being recycled and exported.
"There are allegations floated that the rice which is already being given to the poor is being recycled and exported abroad. There are a huge number of lorries illegally transporting rice in almost all districts in Andhra Pradesh, which have been caught by the vigilance department. If a thorough investigation is conducted with the CBI, all those who have stolen the funds given by the central government for rice will come out," he further alleged. (ANI)

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