Revival of rural PDS: expansion and outreach

Using the recent rounds of NSS data, this paper evaluates the performance and outreach of India’s public distribution system (PDS) in the rural areas. The results suggest a significant improvement in the performance of PDS in terms of its outreach and offtake. States like Bihar and Jharkhand which were lagging behind earlier have shown a marked improvement. Find greater coverage and utilisation of the PDS by SCs and STs. Using a seemingly unrelated regression (SUR), find that the share of PDS in total household consumption of rice and wheat has increased over the years, specially for the households in lower income brackets.