Compulsory Aadhaar linking has helped the government detect over 2.75 crore duplicate and fraudulent ration cards. The process of digitising ration cards had begun long back in 2013 and has become more sustained in the last 4 years.
The purpose of the ration card is to provide the legitimate beneficiaries with subsidised foodgrains. The discovery of fake Aadhaar cards helps stop the supply of subsidised foodgrains to those who don’t deserve it and provide a steady supply to those who are genuinely in need of subsidies. The government supplies foodgrains at subsidised rates equivalent to 17,5o0 crore rupees every year.
The states that have seen the largest number of Aadhaar cards made invalid because of duplicity are, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Telangana. About 23.19 crore ration cards have been issued in the country under the National Food Security Act. All the ration cards have been digitised and the rate at which the cards are being linked to Aadhaar is 82 percent. The estimate is that when the Aadhaar linking is 100 percent more ration cards will emerge as fake, this is not the whole number. Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal account for 50 percent of the total deleted ration cards so far.
The NFSA is such a gigantic affair, the largest welfare scheme in the world which provides cover for over 80 crore people. Since it’s such a large-scale programme there are bound to be defaulters, it’s no surprise. The linking of the Aadhaar card to the ration card is an important task for the government in the sense that it will allow for a routine check on who is taking advantage of the government schemes at the cost of the actual beneficiaries. In a country as large as India, despite the aims of help poverty and provide welfare, especially when resources are limited there are always people deceiving the government and finding ways to prevent the trickle-down effect completely undoing the whole attempt to eradicate poverty and hunger.