The government will increase the programmes of distributing rice at the rate of Tk 10 per kg to the extremely poor families in the upcoming budget under the food-friendly programme.
Under the programme each family will get 30 kg of rice every month.
In the context of the proposed budget Dr Shamsul Alam, state minister for planning, said that the prices of daily commodities in the global market have gone up due to the Ukraine-Russia war.
“Its impact has been felt in the country as well. The present people-friendly government will therefore increase the scope of the rice distribution program at the rate of Tk 10 per kg. So that people do not suffer. In a word, more allocations will be made for the social security diversion program,” he mentioned.
However, the initial size of the budget is set at Tk 677,864 crore in the next budget, up Tk 74,000 crore over the current fiscal and the target for revenue income is Tk 431,657 crore.
The overall allocation to the social security sector will be increased in the budget for 2022-23 fiscal, and around 11 lakh more beneficiaries will be included under the scheme.
According to the proposed budget data, a total of Tk 6,745 crore has been estimated for food subsidy in the budget of 2022-23.
In the current fiscal 2021-22, the government has a plan to procure 32.56 lakh metric tons of food grains and distribute 32.75 lakh metric tons of food grains.
So far, this fiscal, the progress of food-grain procurement is satisfactory or 75 percent.
According to the sources concerned, in the new financial year, the allocation for the social security sector may be increased to Tk 1.10 lakh crore against the Tk 1.07 lakh crore in the current 2021-22 financial year.
At present 57 lakh elderly people in the country are getting an old-aged allowance. Each of them is getting Tk 500 every month as an allowance. If 11 lakh more people are added to the scheme in the next financial year, the total number of beneficiaries will stand at 68 lakh.
Besides, at present 24.75 lakh widows and other women abandoned by their husbands are also getting the allowance monthly. One of the best initiatives of the government is the allowance being provided to different types of beneficiaries under a social security programme.
This is a financial programme of the government. Through this programme the government is providing financial assistance to the elderly, destitute, unemployed and low-income people.
AB Mirza Azizul Islam, former caretaker government’s finance adviser, said, “The living cost of the poor people has significantly increased due to food supply shock caused by the Ukraine-Russia war. The Food-Friendly Programme is not that helpful to alleviate the financial conditions of the marginalised people.”