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Open Market Sale Scheme (OMSS)

  • Context (TH): The Centre discontinued the sale of grains through OMSS to States to control inflation and to ensure food grains for 80 crore beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act (NFSA), maintain a buffer stock, and have a marketable surplus.
  • Several States that run an expanded PDS (over and above NFSA norms) depend on OMSS. Because of the centre’s decision, these states are negotiating with other states to procure more rice.

Open Market Sale Scheme (OMSS)

  • Food Corporation of India (FCI) sells surplus stocks of wheat and rice under Open Market Sale Scheme (Domestic) at pre-determined prices through e-auction in the open market from time to time.
  • OMSS aims to enhance the supply of food grains, especially wheat, during the lean season, thereby moderating the open market prices, especially in the deficit regions.
  • FCI sells the food grain under OMSS only for consumption and to keep inflation under control.

Union government’s recent direction for OMSS

  • Conduct the e-auctions of wheat and rice to check the inflationary trends.
  • Restrict the supply of foodgrains through the OMSS (Domestic) to 100 tonnes per bidder.
  • Exclude state governments from the purview of OMSS to maintain adequate stock levels in the central pool while controlling prices.
  • Whoever purchases cannot export or give it to another State’s agencies.
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