Ration card is an official document issued to households that are eligible to purchase essential commodities, such as food grain, at subsidized prices from the Public Distribution System, and also serves as a proof of identification.
Ration cards are issued by the Department of Food Supplies and Consumer Affairs of state governments, under the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and the eldest woman of the house, above the age of 18, is the head of the household for the purposes of issue of Ration Cards.1 As the issue of Ration Cards is governed by the state, there may be variations in the procedure, documents required, etc. depending on which state you live in.
There are two primary types of Ration Cards:
- Priority Ration Card – Priority Ration Cards are issued to households that meet the eligibility criteria set by their state government. Each priority household is entitled to 5 kilograms of food grain per member.2
- Antyodaya (AAY) Ration Cards – AAY Ration Cards are issued to “poorest of poor” households.3 Each AAY household is entitled to 35 kilograms of food grain.2
Electronic Ration Card
The governments of some states, like Delhi, have launched an e-Ration service, which are just as valid as physical Ration Cards.This service will enable you to obtain Ration Cards, and check the costs and food grain availability online. For example, for Delhi, you can download your e-Ration Card here.
Read this government resource to know more.
- Section 13(1), National Food Security Act, 2013
- Section 3(1), National Food Security Act, 2013
- Press Information Bureau, Antyodaya Anna Yojana, https://pib.gov.in/newsite/mbErel.aspx?relid=95141