Ahmedabad, Apr 6: Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel today officially launched the state-wide implementation of National Food Security Act, which has been renamed as 'Maa Annapurna Yojna (Scheme)' by the state government.
Though the Food Security Act was passed during the UPA regime at the Centre, Patel, in her speech at a grand launching function at Sanathal village near here, did not mention anything about the Act and sought to give all credit to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who according to Patel, envisioned the scheme.
"When Congress was ruling this state, only 1.88 crore people were given food-grains at subsidised rates prior to 1995. Now, under this Maa Annapurna Yojna, 3.82 crore people of Gujarat will be benefited. Each of them will get rice at Rs 3 per Kg and wheat at Rs 2 per Kg," said Patel.
She even slammed past Congress governments in Gujarat for "not understanding the pain of poor citizens". "Out of 35 kg given at subsidised rates during Congress rule, only 16 kg of food-grain was given at those rates, while for the remaining 19 kg, government used to charge Rs 7.70. Now, PM Modi removed this condition and has announced to give the entire 35 kg of food-grain at subsidised rates," she said.
Patel claimed that Modi is the first PM of India who took care of poor citizens. "Due to efforts of Modiji, many poor citizens, including widows and those farmers who lost their crops, are now covered under this scheme and they no longer have to worry about feeding their families. No other PM has thought about poor people in the past," said Patel.
Though the implementation of the Act started in Gujarat from April 1, it was officially launched by the CM on the foundation day of BJP today. Other ministers have simultaneously launched the scheme from different parts of state today.
In her speech, Patel appealed to the citizens to come forward in withdrawing their names from the list of beneficiaries if they are well-off and do not need the food-grain at subsidised rates.