Food distribution in India-the way ahead

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Essay Contest for UPSC Exam for IAS

Good Food makes life happy and healthy. In the Paleolithic era, Human being lived completely based on hunting animals and gathering leaves, fruits, vegetables to full their empty stomach. However, the new and modern technology transformed life of people only but situation of society not transformed yet. We can see around us how people run here and there to get-

    “दो वक़्त की रोटी “

                Man may go anywhere but everyone from poor to VIP person, needs meal at 1:30 PM and at night 9:00PM everyday. The only essential part of every living organisms is food.. food.. food… !As per Oxfam report 2021 each day between 7750 and 15345 people died from hunger. In our INDIA according to National Health survey more than 19 crore Indians are under nourished and faced hunger.

           The people of India,  celebrating  their talent at international level. India has rich resources of everything but lack of distribution and management leaves a weak mark on the international platform.  Countless schemes, food campaigns, programs are announced regularly by the Government for the best life of its citizens. Latest  ‘Global hunger report 2022’  India at 107 among 121 countries, behind Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal.  Despite all the efforts by the Government of India, the success of food security is yet pending. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) considers food distribution as a subset of the food system. The process and methodology behind food distribution varies by location.

      Indian Government is running largest food program in the world.  Various efforts are being made by the government for distribution of food grains. Some are below.

1)Public Distribution system (PDS)

Aim: management of scarcity through distribution of food at affordable prices.

Benefits: wheat, rice, sugar, kerosene are being allocated to state/UTs for distribution at lower central issue price.

2)National food security Act 2013

Aim: to provide legal right to food to poor

3)Antyodaya Anna yojna 2000

Aim: launched to target the poorest to poor

4)Mid Day Meal program

Aim: Eliminating hunger at school level .

There is food everyone on this planet

but not everyone eats.


Despite all the efforts by the Government of India, the success of food security is yet pending. There may be many reasons behind food insecurity. But most of time  what happens due to poor management of food distribution rise food insecurity in society  example : incidents of food rotting , the lack of adequate covered storage, Transportation leakages  Black Marketing by Fair price  owners,   TPDS suffers from large leakages of food grains during transportation to and from ration shops into the open market etc..

          The Indian concept of  Dharma stresses the importance of growing and sharing food. Atharva Veda states: “All have equal rights in articles of food and water.

“IN PUCL vs. Union of India,  the Court held that right to food is a fundamental right of all citizens. The WHO states that there are three pillars that determine food security: food availability, food access, and food use and misuse. The FAO adds a fourth pillar: the stability of the first three dimensions of food security over time.. for equal distribution of food

  • we have to  adopt food survey like census.
  • Government can installed ‘Food ATMs’


Haryana Government, recently set up its first ATM machine for dispensing food grains (Gurugram), which will provide three types of grains — wheat, rice, and millet.

  • Government should be adopt strategies from Mizoram, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim rated best performing States with regard to distribution of food grains under Phase I&II of PM-GKAY.
  • Greater and more active involvement of the panchayats in the PDS can significantly improve access at the village level.

also an urgent need to set up a proper and effective grievances redressed  system for both the fair price shops as well as beneficiaries

  • further strengthened by the increased public participation through social audit  and participation of SHGs, Cooperatives and NGOs in ensuring the transparency of PDS system at ground level.

  According to  Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, a motivational psychological theory, Food is an innate physiological need along with water, warmth, and rest. Lack of healthy food  malnutrition, anemia, vitamins deficiency, kwashiorkor etc. But now India is emerging as the fastest growing economy in Asia. Our India is already skyrocketing in every field so we can say that the days are near when India will make a wonderful breakthrough in food security.

-Mudra Padmashali

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