A National Sample Survey Exercise points towards the fact that about 5% of the total population in the country sleeps without two square meals a day. This section of the population can be called as "hungry". In order to make TPDS more focused and targeted towards this category of population, the "Antyodaya Anna Yojana" (AAY) was launched in December, 2000 for one crore poorest of the poor families. AAY contemplates identification of one crore poorest of the poor families from amongst the BPL families covered under TPDS within the States and providing them foodgrains at a highly subsidized rate of Rs.2/ per kg. for wheat and Rs. 3/ per kg for rice. The States/UTs are required to bear the distribution cost, including margin to dealers and retailers as well as the transportation cost. Thus the entire food subsidy is being passed on to the consumers under the scheme.
The scale of issue that was initially 25 kg per family per month has been increased to 35 kg per family per month with effect from 1st April, 2002.
FIRST EXPANSION OF AAY
The AAY Scheme has been expanded in 2003-2004 by adding another 50 lakh households from amongst the BPL families.
SECOND EXPANSION OF AAY
In line with the National Common Minimum Programme (NCMP) of the UPA Government and the announcement made by the Hon'ble Finance Minister in the Union Budget 2004-05, the Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) has further been expanded with effect from 1st August, 2004 by another 50 lakh BPL families by including, inter-alia, all households at the risk of hunger. The following criteria will be adopted for identification of additional Antyodaya families:-
Landless agriculture labourers, marginal farmers, rural artisans/craftsmen such as potters, tanners, weavers, blacksmiths, carpenters, slum dwellers, and persons earning their livelihood on daily basis in the informal sector like porters, coolies, rickshaw pullers, hand cart pullers, fruit and flower sellers, snake charmers, rag pickers, cobblers, destitutes and other similar categories in both rural and urban areas.
Households headed by widows or terminally ill persons/disabled persons/persons aged 60 years or more with no assured means of subsistence or societal support.
Widows or terminally ill persons or disabled persons or persons aged 60 years or more or single women or single men with no family or societal support or assured means of subsistence.
All primitive tribal households.
THIRD EXPANSION OF AAY
As announced in the Union Budget 2005-06, the AAY has further been expanded to cover another 50 lakh BPL households thus increasing its overage to 2.5 crore households.
IDENTIFICATION OF FAMILIES UNDER AAY
The State-wise estimated number of AAY families and the families identified and ration cards issued under AAY by the State Govts./UTs is at the Annexure