Kerala to demand more food grains for Onam

RiceThiruvananthapuram: Kerala government will be seeking additional quota of rice from Centre for public distribution during Onam.

This was decided at a meeting of the consultative committee of FCI that met here on Sunday.

Currently, the State is getting 83477 metric tonnes of rice a month. An additional quantity of 22540 metric tonnes, which it was receiving, was discontinued from April this year. The State wants this to be restored for the festival season. The demand will be communicated to the Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ram Vilas Paswan.

Opposition Leader Ramesh Chennithala has already written to the Union Minister seeking higher allocation of rice for the State.

Mr. Chennithala noted that the allocations had been cut citing that Kerala had not carried out the National Food Security Act.  This would seriously hit lakhs of ration card holders in the State. Kerala had the most efficient public distribution system in the country with ration shops within two km covering 97 per cent of the population.

He pointed out that demand for food grains would be going up during the Onam season. Failure of Centre to release adequate amount of grains would lead to hoarding and black marketing.