Chennai, Dec 20: Strongly opposing the draft National Food Security Bill, Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa today said it was replete with "confusion and inaccuracy" and asked the Centre not to attempt encroaching into the domains of states.
In a strongly-worded letter to PM Manmohan Singh, she said the Central government "should not attempt or be seen to attempt encroaching into the domains of the states" and sought exemption of Tamil Nadu from the purview of the proposed measure.
"In a Federal structure like ours where the states are in close and direct contact with the people, the choice of designing and implementing popular welfare schemes is at best left to the states," Jayalalithaa said responding to the Centre seeking the state's views on the measure.
Noting that the provisions of the bill contemplated achieving food security through Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS), the chief minister said "forced implementation of TPDS" would entail an additional financial burden of about Rs 1,800 crore per annum with no statutory commitment forthcoming from the Centre.
"Like the BPL norms proposed by the Union Planning Commission, the categorisation of households and arbitrary restriction of coverage as contained in the Central Bill will lead to controversy and make a mockery of providing food security," she said.