Mumbai: The government is giving a subsidy of around at Rs 35 in every plate (thali) under the ‘Shiv Bhojan’ scheme, which offers a full meal in Rs 10 to the poor.
Replying to a question in the state legislative council in this regard, rai8sed by Niranjan Davkhare (BJP), the Maharashtra minister for Food and Civil Supplies, Chhagan Bhujbal, “The thaali costs Rs 10 per plate, but the actual value of the meal is Rs 50 and Rs 35 per plate in urban and rural areas, respectively.
Soon after coming to power in November last year, the Shiv Sena-led Maha-Vikas-Aghadi government launched the ‘Shiv Bhojan’ scheme on a pilot basis to provide subsidised meals to the poor for just Rs 10 per plate. The goal of the scheme is to provide affordable and quality food to the poor.
The difference between the actual cost of the food and income generated by its sale is compensated through state subsidy, the minister said in his written reply. Under the scheme, at least one Shiv Bhojan centre is being set up in every district and municipal corporation area of the state. “We are working on increasing the number of centres across the state,” Bhujbal said.
The new government launched the scheme last month, which is aimed at providing a meal to the poor for just Rs 10, on the occasion of the 71st Republic Day. Under the scheme, which was launched on a pilot basis, thalis or lunch plates would be available to the people at designated centres/ canteens during a stipulated time in all the districts.
Launching of the scheme was one of the poll promises made by the Shiv Sena, which shares power with the NCP and Congress in a coalition government.