In a significant stride towards ensuring food security and supporting the underprivileged, the Cabinet, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has announced the extension of the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY) for an additional five years. This decision implies the provision of 5 kg of free food grains per month to 81 crore economically disadvantaged people starting from January 1, 2024. This scheme, initially introduced in 2020 as a pandemic relief measure, will now continue, with an expected expenditure of around Rs 11.8 lakh crore over the next five years.
Guaranteeing Food Security
The PMGKAY scheme has been a beacon of hope for numerous families across the nation, particularly during the distressing times of the pandemic. The extension of this scheme is a testament to the government's commitment to securing the basic right to food for all citizens, particularly the poorest of the poor. It is estimated that this move will alleviate the strain on the monthly budgets of around 81 crore individuals, enabling them to channel their resources towards other essential needs.
Advancing Women Empowerment
In another landmark decision, the Cabinet has approved the distribution of drones to 15,000 women's self-help groups (SHGs). This initiative is poised to enhance the capacities of these groups in various sectors, including agriculture, surveillance, and delivery services. By providing access to this cutting-edge technology, the government aims to promote the technological upskilling of women, particularly in rural areas. This, in turn, is expected to contribute significantly towards advancing gender equality and women empowerment in these sectors.
Shaping a Better Future
These key decisions by the Cabinet are a clear reflection of the government's commitment to building an inclusive and equitable society. By ensuring food security for the underprivileged and promoting the technological upskilling of women, the government is paving the way for a future where no one is left behind. While the challenges are numerous, these steps signal a firm resolve to overcome them and build a resilient nation that values the dignity and potential of every citizen.