ATMS (Automated Teller Machines) doling out cash is a familiar sight in most cities and towns. But have you heard of a "Grain ATM'? The Haryana Government has recently set up its first ATM machine for dispensing food grains in Gurugram district. Let's find out more about it.
First of its kind
The country's first food grain ATM has come up at Farrukhnagar, and is named "Annapurti" (Automated, Multi Commodity, Grain Dispensing Machine). Installed as a pilot project -a small-scale implementation to test the viability of the project- the ATM as of now will provide three types of grains - wheat, rice, and millet. It is said that each machine can dispense 70 kg of grains in under seven minutes at a time.
The machine has been installed under the UN's World Food Programme, which works closely with several countries to address issues of food scarcity and hunger.
Why has it been set up?
The purpose of the Annapurti ATM, according to Haryana's Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala, is to make the process of distributing grains at government-run ration shops easy and hassle-free. On successful completion of the pilot project at Farrukhnagar, the government plans to install these machines at all ration shops across the State.
How does it function?
The grain ATM has a biometric system with a touch-screen, where the beneficiaries have to enter their Aadhaar or ration card number to get their grains. This is to ensure the right quantity of grains reaches the right beneficiaries. As it is an automatic machine; the scope of error in measurement is said to be negligible. On biometric authentication, the machine will dispense the foodgrains the bags placed under the machine. Besides helping prevent pilferage, the system is expected to bring in greater transparency in the public distribution system and reduce waiting time of beneficiaries.
Picture Credit : Google