10 Missing Kilos: PDS Corruption Starves Jharkhand Villages

Today IndiaUnheard publishes its sixth video in as many months on the corruption and mismanagement prevalent within the Public Distribution System (PDS) in the state of Jharkhand.  The state fares poorly in poverty and developmental statistics making subsidized grains and fuel made available by the PDS absolutely essential in putting food on the table of families who belong to marginalized communities.

IndiaUnheard Community Correspondent Sonathan Murmu lives in the village of Tardih in District Dumka, Jharkhand. He belongs to the tribal community and lives in an economically depressed region. Poverty is high. Most of the families make a difficult living below the poverty line. Work is seasonal and hard to come by. The men have taken to migrating to far away cities in order to send money back to their families. A majority of the people are illiterate. Awareness of their rights as citizens is lacking, something that the state doesn’t hesitate in taking advantage off.

Under the PDS scheme, the families of Tardih village are supposed to get 35kgs of subsidized grains every month. But Sonatan and others have always had to make do with 25kgs. The local dealer blames the short shrift on unavailability and lack of supply. But there is an overwhelming feeling in the village that subsidized grains promised to them are being sold in the local black market. It is not an uncommon story in these parts.

Meanwhile, over 100 families live in the constant fear that they and their children may go to bed hungry.

Call to Action: Sonatan asks you to call Block Development Officer, Gyan Shankar Jaiswal on  9431328324 and demand that he look into the issue immediately and ensure:

1)      that the mandated quantity be given to the people of Tardih village
2)      that the goods distributed be of good quality
3)      that the goods are distributed monthly and on time

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