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No FCI counter in Narela Mandi for foodgrains procurement: Gopal Rai

He pointed out that for the past few days he had been getting complaints from farmers that in Narela Mandi, the FCI had not been procuring foodgrains with the MSP.

Statesman News Service | New Delhi |

Delhi Agriculture Minister Gopal Rai said on Friday that he could not find a single counter set up by the Food Corporation of India (FCI) in Narela Mandi during an inspection for foodgrains procurement. He visited Narela Mandi to review the reality of the FCI’s claims.

He said in a statement that when foodgrains were being procured inside mandis across the country, why was the FCI having a problem only in Delhi? Rai appealed to the Centre to stop harassing farmers and purchase foodgrains by setting up counters in mandis. He will hold a meeting with senior officials of the FCI tomorrow.

He pointed out that for the past few days he had been getting complaints from farmers that in Narela Mandi, the FCI had not been procuring foodgrains with the MSP.

“When we asked the FCI for details regarding this, the agency wrote to us that it had been purchasing foodgrains since 1 April. Yesterday, when we asked for a report from the Mandi, we discovered that the FCI did not even set up a counter here. Yet, the FCI again said that they have been making purchases”, Rai alleged.

It was then decided to hold an inspection. However, the President and Secretary of the Mandi informed that not even one counter has been set up by the FCI as yet. He said, “I find it difficult to comprehend what the problem is? If the FCI has set up a counter, then they may show us where it is. And if there is no counter, there is no need for them to tell lie.”

Rai asserted, “When I asked FCI officials why they aren’t purchasing grains, they said the farmers are yet to submit the ‘Girdawari’. The villages in Delhi are urbanised ones, and hence their ‘Girdawari’ hasn’t been made. They’ve been asked to get the documents signed, for which farmers would have come to the Mandi and then go to the godown. If throughout the country, purchasing is being done in the Mandis, then what is the issue being faced by the FCI in Delhi?”