From its launch on March 12th 2021, ‘Mera Ration’ app has recorded over 15 lakh downloads on Google Play Store. The app was launched under One Nation One Ration Card (ONORC) plan to benefit National Food Security Act (NFSA) beneficiaries, particularly migrant beneficiaries to avail maximum benefit of ration cards portability.
The App has been developed by the Department in technical association with Central NIC Unit – providing a host of useful TPDS/ONORC information and features. To facilitate better access and maximum benefit, the app is available in 12 languages viz. English, Hindi, Oriya, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, Urdu, Gujarati, Marathi and Bangla.
Android users can download the App for free from the Google Play Store. The App provides the following main features/services to the beneficiaries:
Beside promoting the app from the central level, all States/UTs have also been requested to undertake wide-spread publicity and awareness of this Mobile App– which is envisaged to give a boost to the portability transactions under ONORC, as this application is very useful for the migrant NFSA beneficiaries to easily know their entitlement details, recent transactions details, check Aadhaar seeding status and eligibility for national portability besides doing a voluntary registration for ONORC as well. Through the feature of locate nearby Fair Price Shop, the migrant beneficiary can easily find shops in new area and follow the map to reach the closest fair price shop to avail foodgrain benefits.
Under One Nation One Ration Card (ONORC) which was running successfully in 32 states/UTs till December 2020, has now became operational in two more states/UTs-Delhi and West Bengal till August 2021 thereby, expanding the scheme to 34 states/UTs covering nearly 75 Crore beneficiaries (almost 94.3% NFSA population). NCT of Delhi and West Bengal being the latest to enable the ONORC plan from 23rd July 2021 and 13th August 2021 respectively. Two remaining states -Assam and Chhattisgarh are targeted for integration under ONORC in next few months.
In addition, presently a monthly average of about 2.2 Crore portability transactions (including inter-/intra-State and PM-GKAY foodgrain transactions) are being recorded consistently in the States/UTs under delivering the subsidised NFSA foodgrains with anywhere flexibility to intended beneficiaries, mostly migrants.
The One Nation One Ration Card (ONORC) is an ambitious plan and endeavour of the Department to ensure seamless delivery of subsidised food-security entitlements to all beneficiaries covered under the National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA), irrespective of their physical location anywhere in the country.
The objective of this programme is to empower all NFSA beneficiaries to be self-reliant for their food security anywhere in the country, through portability of their same existing ration cards to seamlessly lift their subsidisedfoodgrains (in part or full) from any ePoS (electronic Point of Sale device) enabled Fair Price Shop in the country with biometric/Aadhaar authentication at the time of lifting the foodgrains through portability. Further, their family members back home can also lift balance/their requirement of foodgrains on the same ration card.
Further, due to the potential of ONORC to empower migrants, this plan has now also become a part of the “Prime Minister’s Technology Driven System Reforms under the AtmaNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan”.
While taking the PDS reforms under End-to-End Computerization of TPDS Operations in the country to a next level, the Department of Food and Public Distribution had started the implementation of a technology driven reform for the nation-wide portability of ration cards under NFSA as an integral part of a Central Sector Scheme, namely, ‘Integrated Management of Public Distribution System (IM-PDS)’ from April 2018. This scheme is being implemented with a total outlay of Rs. 127.30 Crore and presently, the validity of this scheme has been extended by the Standing Finance Committee (SFC) up to 31.03.2022 without escalation in the total project cost.
Although the facility of ONORC shall equally benefit about all 80 Crore NFSA beneficiaries in the country to lift their foodgrains from any FPS of choice, but it primarily aims to enable migratory NFSA beneficiaries (mostly labourers, daily-wagers, urban poor like rag-pickers, street-dwellers, temporary workers in organised and unorganised sectors, domestic workers, etc.) who frequently migrate across the country in search of better opportunities or for any other reasons, to access the Public Distribution System (PDS) and if desire, may lift their entitled foodgrains from any ePoS enabled FPS in the country through portability. Thus, installation of ePoS devices at the FPSs and Aadhaar seeding of beneficiaries with their digitised ration card data are the two main enablers of this technology driven initiative.
With respect to publicity and awareness of this high impact programme, the responsibility has been entrusted to the respective State/UT Government, as under TPDS the responsibilities of identification of beneficiaries and distribution of foodgrains to them rests with the States/UTs. Besides above, the Department is also making efforts for the promotion, beneficiary outreach and awareness generation of ONORC from time to time. The Department is regularly coordinating with other relevant Ministries/Departments such as MoIB, MoLE, MoHUA, Railways and some other agencies for strategic outreach to beneficiaries and publicity campaigning of the initiative. Various Information, Education and Communication (IEC) material in different languages have been developed by the Department with the support of MyGov (MeitY) and other relevant agencies and have shared with States/UTs for use on outdoor/physical and digital publicity mediums, social media, and Government websites/portals/etc. The ONORC is also a part of the PM-SVANidhi program of the MoHUA.
The Department through its Social Media handles on Twitter and YouTube is regularly making efforts to spread the word about ONORC. Besides, undertook a Radio based publicity campaigning (in Hindi and 10 other regional languages) carrying message of Hon’ble PM was conducted through 167 FM Radio and 91 Community Radio Stations through BOC. A special campaign with the support of Indian Railways in the form of announcements of audio spots and display of audio/visual (A/V) spots at more than 2,400 railway stations in the country is also being carried out to sensitise the migrant population who mostly travel through trains including ‘Shramik Specials”. Additionally, the Department has also started the publicity of ONORC programme through Bus Wraps on Govt. run State Transport Buses in some States/UTs under ONORC.
Further, all States/UTs have also been requested to enable a dedicated 14445 toll-free number for ONORC operations for information dissemination, matters pertaining to portability of ration cards, etc. In parallel, the Department in association with NIC has developed a web-based facility for registration of migrant beneficiaries under ONORC and a mobile application of this shall is also being finalised to provide a variety of helpful information and assistance to migrant beneficiaries.
Progressive rollout and coverage of beneficiaries under the One Nation One Ration Card (ONORC) plan in 34 States/UTs up to August 2021:
|Month/ Year||Rollout in States/UTs||Count of States||NFSA Population|
|August 2019||4 States in two clusters:
(19% NFSA population)
|October 2019||Another 4 States in two more clusters:
(33% NFSA population)
|January 2020||4 more States namely Goa, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Tripura integrated into single national cluster of 12 States (along with 8 earlier States)||12||35.12 Cr.
(44% NFSA population)
|May 2020||5 more States, namely Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, and Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu||17||60 Cr.
(74% NFSA population)
|June 2020||3 States of Mizoram, Odisha and Sikkim||20||63 Cr.
(77% NFSA population)
|August 2020||4 States/UT of Jammu & Kashmir, Manipur, Nagaland and Uttarakhand||24||>65 Cr.
(80% NFSA population)
|September 2020||2 UTs of Ladakh and Lakshadweep||26||>65 Cr.
(80% NFSA population)
|October 2020||2 States of Arunachal Pradesh and Tamil Nadu||28||~68.6 Cr.
(85% NFSA population)
|November 2020||2 UTs of Chandigarh and Puducherry||30||~68.7 Cr.
(85% NFSA population)
|December 2020||2 State/UT of Meghalaya and A&N Islands||32||~69 Cr.
(86% NFSA population)
|July 2021||1 UT of NCT of Delhi||33||~69 Cr.
(86.7% NFSA population)
|August 2021||1 State of West Bengal||34||74.9 Cr.
(94.3% NFSA population)