Ranil Wickremesinghe president Government Provident Ranil Wickremesinghe

Two million low income families to get rice for two months

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COLOMBO (News 1st) – The Cabinet paper presented by President Ranil Wickremesinghe for the provision of 10 kg of rice per month for two million low income families, including Samurdhi beneficiaries for a period of two months, has been approved, said the President's Media Division.It also added that the government will purchase 61,600 metric tons of paddy to meet the requirement of 40,000 Metric Tons.

This program is proposed to be implemented by District Secretaries and Divisional Secretaries with the assistance of small and medium-scale paddy mills.Under the District Secretaries and Divisional Secretaries, rice will be distributed among the identified Samurdhi beneficiaries including low-income earners using the existing system and the Ministry of Women, Child Affairs and Social Empowerment will coordinate the District Secretaries and issue necessary instructions to them.The total estimated cost for this program is Rs.8,040 million, which includes Rs.6,200 million for paddy purchase, Rs.290 million for rice drying, Rs.590 million for milling charges, Rs.200 million for packing costs, Rs.160 million as additional payment to mill owners, and Rs.600 million for transportation.However, the program’s estimated cost will vary depending on market fluctuations, and a budget provision of around Rs.10,000 million will be allocated to be used if the need arises, said the President's Media Division.According to data from the Departments of Agriculture and Agrarian Development, the land extent used for paddy cultivation in the 2022/2023 Maha season is approximately 732,201 hectares, and the expected yield is 3.3 million metric tons, while approximately 2.2 million metric tons of rice can be produced.

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