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Ministers told to visit Chhattisgarh to study grains procurement

GHAZIABAD: The UP government will send a team of ministers and officials on a two-day tour of Chhattisgarh to study its effective grains procurement and public distribution system. The team will comprise minister of state for food & civil supplies Atul Garg, agriculture minister Laxmi Narayan Chaudhary and food secretary Ajay Chauhan besides three other officials.
Garg, who represents Ghaziabad assembly constituency, told media persons at his residence on Sunday that the team will tour Chhattisgarh on April 1 and 2.
“The study tour has been ordered directly by chief minister Aditya Nath Yogi following a meeting with senior officials of the food and agriculture departments last week. It emerged during the meeting that the procurement target was not being met in the state. For the current financial year, the target for procurement had been pegged at 40 lakh metric tonnes. However, the chief minister has asked to revise the target to 80 lakh metric tonnes. Last year, there was distress sale of paddy with farmers selling their crops for much less than the fixed procurement price. Encouragement of middlemen has been the reason behind the crop sale crisis,” said Garg.
The chief minister has also directed the food department to put an end to the practice of adulteration, particularly in milk. “We will ensure that every poor and BPL family gets a ration card. We are also working on a plan to encourage BPL families, who have become prosperous over the years, to voluntarily give up their ration cards. The state spends Rs 5,000 crore in food subsidies alone every year and it will make a big difference to the overall budget of UP if at least 25% of the amount is saved. I have asked the supply department of Ghaziabad to begin the work of weeding out fake ration cards to begin with,” he added.
All ministries and departments have also been asked to chart out a 100-day plan of action which will be reviewed after completion of the period.

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