With the special ration card drive taking off in full swing last month, the Divisional Food and Supply department has successfully managed to distribute more than 3,000 new ration cards to the residents in the city.

Antyodaya Anna Yojana
A special drive was also conducted for beneficiaries of the Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) scheme and the Below Poverty Line (BPL) section, who received their ration cards to purchase food grain at a cheaper rate. Pic for Representation

With this plan coming to fruition, parties contesting the assembly elections will now have to skip the idea of the distribution of ration cards as a part of their campaign.

According to a highly placed official in the department, such efforts were made to stop politicians from wooing voters by providing them with new ration cards when the elections are round the corner.

“It was always the practice of political leaders to provide ration cards, voter’s identification cards and PAN cards, keeping an eye on the upcoming elections. It was our systematic attempt to stop such practices to entice voters, and to spread a message that rations cards would be available in just 15 days if all the necessary documents would be provided to us,” said an officer from the Divisional Food and Supply department.

A special drive was also conducted last month in the five districts — including Pune, Sangli, Satara, Solapur and Kolhapur, under which the beneficiaries of Antyodaya Anna Yojana and the people below the poverty line received their ration cards to get the food grain at a cheaper rate.

“We have also cancelled the ration cards with repeated names and address. A drive was also conducted yesterday in Yerawada,” said Assistant Food Supply Officer, Suchitra Amle-Patil. She added that the drive was conducted in eight zones of the city.