Faulty biometric scanners at PDS stores have caused a stir across the state of Tamil Nadu as consumers struggle to get hold of their ration supplies despite queuing for long hours.
At several PDS stores across the state, biometric scanners go awry and heated arguments ensue with staff at these fair-priced stores. Many ration card holders said the government should intervene immediately to facilitate the operation of ration shops and fix faulty biometric counters.
Santhanavally, a resident of Chepauk in Chennai in an interview with IANS said, “At the PDS store where I buy my monthly ration, the biometric facility is always faulty which makes me go home empty handed. If you transfer your data into a technology-driven environment, it is your responsibility to ensure the proper functioning of that technology.”
She also said that in the ration store, the biometric scanner did not work ten days a month, which led to long queues in the store.
Usha Rani, a PDS cardholder from Kovilpatti Street, Ward 13, Erode, in an interview with IANS said: “The biometric scanners in my PDS store are not working properly and only work occasionally. I am went to the store to buy my ration after finishing my chores at 11:30 a.m. only to find that the biometric scanner was not checking my thumbprint. This was the case with several other consumers queuing. waited for a long time but the staff told me the server was not working and again i went the next day but it was still not working this makes it difficult for us as we only depend on the ration provided by PDS stores for our life.
Even though this problem persists statewide, vendors are refusing to provide rations through the old billing system that worked properly.
Mr Gopalswamy, a resident of Kanniyakumari in an interview with IANS, said: “The ration shops should also have the billing system on standby when the biometric scanners are not working. rations via the old billing system if the biometric scanners fail and each month the scanners only work for five to seven days Heated arguments and sometimes physical confrontations also occur in ration stores because of this biometric scanner The government must immediately take action to correct this.
When contacted, a senior civil supplies department officer in Tamil Nadu told IANS, “Yes, it is true that the biometric scanners are not working properly, but they are maintained by the National Computer Center (NIC) and we have communicated to them about the difficulties encountered in PDS stores on this matter. The alternative arrangement of the old billing system can be tried on hold, but such a decision has not been made at the higher level. We will correct these deviations soon.
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