Ensure supply of quality food-grains to JK: FCI told

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SRINAGAR: Taking note of the recurrent complaints regarding supply of substandard food-grains by the Food Corporation of India (FCI), Minister for Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution (CAPD) and Tribal Affairs, Choudhary Zulfkar AliSaturday said there would be no compromise on the quality of rations and the FCI should ensure supply of good quality food-grains to Jammu and Kashmir.

Chairing a preparatory meeting regarding implementation of National Food Security Act (NFSA), the Minister warned that if FCI fails to provide quality food-grains to J&K, the CA&PD Department will be forced to explore alternative supply channels to ensure better rations for consumers.

“The CA&PD department is not going to accept substandard food-grains in anyway,” the Minister made it clear reiterating that while J&K pays FCI fully in advance for the food-grains it lifts, the State will not accept inferior quality rations from the Corporation.

Deliberating on implementation of NFSA in the state, the Minister said the proposed move is aimed at marking a paradigm shift in addressing the shortage of food from the current welfare approach to right-based.

The Minister designated an officer of the rank of Additional Secretary to monitor implementation of NFSA. The officer has been assigned the job of preparing a holistic and comprehensive roadmap portraying issues and challenges for implementation of NFSA in light of the total allocation, food storage capacity and funds required for the purpose besides weather conditions and its impact on the storage.

Zulfkar called for modernization of existing CAPD godowns as it is a prerequisite for the implementation of NFSA.

The Minister said that the implementation of NFSA will be a landmark move aimed at the welfare of the people. “It (NFSA) provides for and asserts the socio-economic right of all the citizens to have access to nutritious food consistent with adequate diet necessary to lead an active and healthy life with dignity,” he said. 

Among others Secretary CA&PD, Director CAPD Kashmir, Director CAPD Jammu and other senior officers of the department were present at the meeting.

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