DAINIK NATION BUREAU
Apathy on the part of district food and civil supply officers has led to large number of people of the district not receiving sugar on the public distribution system during the Holi festival. Many of the economically unprivileged people for whom PDS is meant had celebrated a low key Holi as they failed to prepare sweets as per the custom of the festival. Things were really distressing with sugar being sold for Rs 36/40 a kg in the markets while the price of the essential kitchen item is Rs 13.50 a kg at the PDS outlets.
Asked why PDS failed to supply sugar to the entitled during the important festival, the district food and civil supply officer PS Pangti said that some technical problems had come in the way of sugar being distributed. “It was not made available at the godowns to be distributed through PDS dealers,” he said.
“Following erratic supply of sugar to the godowns, some of the PDS dealers could not have lifted their quota of sugar before the Holi festival,” he added.
Kailash Aggarwal, a PDS dealer at Dalanwala, said that they had not received sugar from the godowns before Holi festival. “Now, a few days after the festival was celebrated, we have been asked by the officials to procure sugar to be distributed among the card holders. Things are really strange,” he said.
Ramesh, resident of Karanpur, said that he had not received sugar from the PDS godown before the Holi. “I was told that sugar would be given after the Holi as it had not reached the godowns,” he said.
According to the PDS dealers, this was not the first time that they failed to provide sugar to the entitled people because of the snag in its transportation. In the past too, sugar was not provided to the dealers before the Diwali festival. According to them, the government should arrange things beforehand so that such problems do not recur.
A PDS dealer said that ahead of Holi, several ration card holders had approached him to enquire whether they would receive sugar for Holi. “They left gloomily after I told them the fact. We hope that in future we would not face the same embarrassment of turning away the card holders particularly during the important festivals like Diwali and Holi,” he said.