The Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food, and Public Distribution are a government ministry of India. The Ministry is led by a minister of Cabinet rank. The present Cabinet Rank Minister Ram Vilas Paswan.
The ministry is divided into two departments:
- Department of Food and Public Distribution
- Department of Consumer Affairs
Department of Food and Public Distribution
The objectives of the Department are to ensure:
- The remunerative rates for the farmers
- Supply of food grains at reasonable prices to the consumers by the public distribution system.
Public Distribution System
The Indian Public Distribution System (PDS) is a national food security system that given subsidized food to India’s poor. Main commodities distributed include wheat, rice, sugar, and kerosene. Surpluses of food from increased crop yields (as a result of the Green Revolution and good monsoon seasons) are undertaken by the Food Corporation of India, established by the Food Corporation Act 1964, implements national policy for farm price support, operations, procurement, storage, preservation, inter-state movement, and bifurcation operations. PDS has a network of about 478,000 Fair Price Shops (FPS), perhaps the largest distribution network of its type in the world, managed by the Union Government and state governments.
Department of Consumer Affairs
The Department of Consumer Affairs administers the policies for Consumer Cooperatives, Monitoring Prices, availability of important commodities, Consumer Movement in the country and Controlling of statutory bodies like Bureau of Indian Standards(BIS) and Weights and Measures.
The department is responsible for following:
- National Test House
- Standards of Weights and Measures
- The Bureau of Indian Standards
- Consumer Cooperatives
- Forward Markets Commission, Mumbai.
- Monitoring of Prices and Availability of essential commodities
- The Consumer Protection Act, 1986
- Consumer Welfare Fund
- Internal Trade
- Inter-State Trade: The Spirituous Preparations (Inter-State Trade and Commerce) Control Act, 1955 (39 of 1955).
- Control of Futures Trading: the Forward Contracts (Regulations) Act, 1952 (74 of 1952).
The department of that are considered essential, manage the availability and takes measures thereof along with prescribing measures to see that the whole system works towards the food security of vulnerable a lot of motivation, grants waves of zeal to owners of shops to make them into mini-mall type structures that could perforce supply the maximum choice of goods and services to population to be reached including beneficiaries in their allotted areas.
This has also granted them more of dignity, accountability, visibility, positive orientation and altered mindset to do well, improve upon their perceived image as one who indulged in diversion, pilferage or leakages that rocked from within, just for his own ends only. This precisely had been the leading factor to go for a systemic change in the scope of activity &goods handling, that has been liked by other states and also drawn the attention of a set of young MPs who had been given a presentation on the same.