Efficacy of India’s food security response during COVID-19

The paper assesses the efficacy of India’s food security response during COVID-19 pandemic. It details out field level insights and also covers the lessons learned from the PDS experience during the pandemic.

The Government of India (GoI) ensures the food security of its population through the distribution of food grains to vulnerable sections at highly subsidized prices every month under the National Food Security Act (NFSA). In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the government announced to distribute free food grains to around 800 million NFSA beneficiaries for eight months. The distribution of free food grains was a massive exercise carried out efficiently by the GoI. Timely delivery of benefits supported many households to survive through the testing times and safeguard their food and nutritional security

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