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Class 9 NCERT Solutions Economics Chapter 4 - Food Security in India

Food Security in India Exercise 53

Solution 1

Food security is ensured in a country when the three dimensions of food security are taken care of. The three dimensions are:

Availability of food ? Presence of enough food for all the persons

Accessibility of food ? Absence of barrier on access to food

Affordability of food ? Capability of all persons to buy food of acceptable quality

Food security has been ensured in India because of the following factors.

(i) Self-sufficiency of food grains ? India has become self-sufficient in food grains (as was its aim since Independence) during the last thirty years. This has been because of a variety of crops grown all over the country.

(ii) Food-security system ? The availability of food grains has been ensured by the government with the help of a carefully designed food-security system. This system involves the maintenance of a buffer stock of food grains, and the distribution of this food among the poorer sections of the society with the help of a public distribution system.

(iii) Implementation of several poverty-alleviation programmes having an explicit food security component ? Apart from the distribution of food through fair-price shops, the government has come up with several poverty-alleviation programmes that enhance food security; for example, mid-day meals and food-for-work.

(iv) Involvement of cooperatives and NGOs ? In addition to the role of the government in ensuring food security, various cooperatives and NGOs are also working intensively towards this direction. Mother Dairy and Amul are two examples of cooperatives involved in ensuring food security.

Solution 2

A large number of people in India suffer from food insecurity.
(1) In the rural areas the following types of people are more prone to food insecurity:
(i) Landless people with little or no land.

(ii) Traditional artisans who provide traditional services.

(iii) Petty self-employed workers.

(iv) Destitute including beggars.

(2) In the urban areas the following types of people are more prone to food insecurity:
(i) Casual labourers.

(ii) Workers employed in the ill paid occupations.

(iii) Workers employed in seasonal activities.

Incidentally these people suffering from food insecurity come from the regions such as economically backward states with high poverty, tribal and remote areas, and regions more prone to natural disaster etc.

Solution 3

The economically-backward states with high incidence of poverty are more food insecure in India. The states of Uttar Pradesh (eastern and south-eastern parts), Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, West Bengal, Chattisgarh, parts of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra account for the largest number of food insecure people in the country.

Solution 4

When India became independent there was acute shortage of food grains. The country had to import large quantities of food grains from other countries. To meet this situation in late 1960s, the government adopted certain strategies in agriculture to make this country self-sufficient in food grains. These strategies included:
1. Use of HYV seeds.

2. Use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides.

3. New scientific methods of farming.

4. Several schemes for irrigation were undertaken to bring more land under cultivation.

All these resulted into 'Green Revolution' especially in the production of wheat and rice. Since the advent of the Green Revolution, India has not only attained self-sufficiency in food grains but also could avoid famine even during the adverse climates.    

Solution 6

When there is a disaster or calamity the production of food grains decrease. This in turn creates shortage of food in the affected areas. Due to the shortage of food, the prices go up. When the prices rise many people can not afford to buy food. Thus, the food security of many people is adversely affected because of disaster or calamity. If such calamity happens in a very wide spread area or continues for a long period of time, it may cause a situation of starvation. Massive starvation can result into a 'famine'.

Solution 7

Seasonal hunger is related to cycles of food growing and harvesting. This is prevalent in rural areas because of the seasonal nature of agricultural activities, and in urban areas because of the casual labour (e.g., there is less work for casual construction labour during the rainy season). This type of hunger exists when a person is unable to get work for the entire year.

Chronic hunger is a consequence of diets persistently inadequate in terms of quantity and/or quality. Poor people suffer from chronic hunger because of their very low income and in turn, inability to buy food even for survival.

Solution 8

The government has ensured the availability of food grains with the help of a carefully-designed food-security system. This system involves the maintenance of a buffer stock of food grains, and the distribution of this food among the poorer sections of the society with the help of a public distribution system. The government has also come up with several poverty-alleviation and food-intervention programmes that enhance food security; for example, the Antyodaya Anna Yojana and the National Food for Work Programme.

Antyodaya Anna Yojana

(i) Launched in December 2000, it caters to the families below poverty level.

(ii) Under this scheme, one crore of the poorest among the BPL families covered under the targeted public distribution system were identified.

(iii) Twenty-five kilograms of food grains were made available to each eligible family at a highly subsidised rate (Rs 2 per kg for wheat and Rs 3 per kg for rice)

(iv) The quantity of food grains was enhanced from 25 to 35 kgs with effect from April 2002.

(v) The scheme was expanded twice to include a greater number of BPL families. By August 2004, 2 crore families were covered under this scheme.

National Food for Work Programme

(i) Launched in November 2004, it caters to 150 most backward districts of the country.

(ii) Its objective is to intensify the generation of supplementary wage employment.

(iii) Any rural poor in need of wage employment and having the desire to do manual unskilled work can avail of this programme.

(iv) It is a 100 per cent Centrally-sponsored scheme. The food grains are provided to the States free of cost.

(v) The district collector is entrusted with the overall responsibility of planning, implementation, coordination, monitoring and supervision.

Solution 9

A buffer stock of food grains is created by the government so that it can be distributed in the food deficit areas and among the poorer strata of the society at a price much lower than the market price. A buffer stock also helps to resolve the problem of food shortage during adverse weather conditions, disaster or calamity. Thus maintaining buffer stock is a step taken by the government in order to ensure food security.

Solution 10

(a) Minimum support price
Minimum Support Price is the minimum price of the foodgrains that is declared by the government each year before the sowing of seeds to provide incentives to farmers for raising the production of crops like wheat and rice.

(b) Buffer Stock
Buffer Stock is the stock of foodgrains, namely wheat and rice, bought by the government through the Food Corporation of India (FCI). The FCI purchases wheat and rice from the farmers in states where there is surplus production. This is done to distribute foodgrains among the poorest section of the society.

(c) Issue Price
Issue Price is the rate at which the government distributes the crops in the buffer stock to the poorest section of society. The Issue price of the foodgrains is lower than the market rate.  This not only helps the poor in procuring foodgrains at the lower rate but also helps to resolve the problem of shortage of food during adverse weather conditions or during the periods of calamity.

(d) Fair price Shops
The ration shops also known as fair price shops are the part of the public distribution system which keep stock of foodgrains, sugar, and kerosene for cooking. These items are sold to people at a price lower than the market price. Any family with a ration card can buy a stipulated amount of some basic commodities every month from the nearby ration shop.

Solution 11

The food procured by FCI is supplied to the poor through the ration shops which have been set up in most of the localities, villages, towns and cities. This is a part of the Public Distribution System (PDS) which is the most important step taken by the government towards ensuring food security in the country. These ration shops supply foodgrains, kerosene, sugar etc. to the poor at a price much lower than the market price. Any family with a ration card can purchase stipulated amount of these items every month from the nearby ration shop.   
But recently, many problems have crept up in the functioning of the ration shops, such as -   
1. The quality of the rationed articles issued to the poor is much less than what it should be. As a result the poor have to depend on the market for their needs.

2. Some of the ration shop dealers resort to malpractices. They illegally divert the grains to the open market for better gains.

3. Some of the ration shop dealers sell only poor quality of grains.   

4. Some dealers do not open their shops regularly and the poor people can not draw their ration quota timely.

5. Still others weigh less and cheat the illiterate poor fellows.

6. Some ration shops are unable to sell their poor quality grains, which become a great headache for FCI then.

7. With the introduction of cards and three different prices for the same articles to the different people, the whole system of PDS has become much complicated.

8. The APL card holders get very little discount at the ration shop because of which they have lost their interest to buy these articles from the ration shops etc. 

Solution 12

Along with the government, cooperatives are also playing an important role in ensuring food security in India, especially in the southern and western parts of the country. The cooperative societies set up shops to sell low-priced goods to the poor. Out of all fair-price shops running in Tamil Nadu, around 94 per cent are being run by cooperatives. Mother Dairy, in Delhi, is involved in providing milk and vegetables at controlled rates decided by the government. Amul, responsible for the White Revolution in India, is a cooperative involved in providing milk and milk products. The Academy of Development Science (ADS) in Maharashtra has been involved in the setting up of Grain Banks in different regions. It organises training and capacity-building programmes on food security for NGOs. Its efforts are also directed towards influencing the government's policy on food security. Thus, through these examples, it can be seen that cooperative are playing an active role in the distribution of food and related items.



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