Kerala will get 98,935 tonnes of rice and 23,589 tonnes of wheat from the Centre during the current fiscal for controlling price rise, according to K.V. Thomas, Union Minister for Food and Consumer Affairs.

A special meeting of the Union Cabinet had decided to allot 65 lakh tonne of wheat to the States and bulk consumers at the minimum support price (MSP). The MSP of rice will be Rs 16 a kg and wheat Rs 12.50, he told reporters here.

The Minister said that rice would be procured either from Andhra Pradesh or Tamil Nadu. Officials of the Food Corporation of India (FCI) and Consumerfed will select the rice variety for the State.

The FCI will release the food grains through Consumerfed in Kerala. Discussions were held with the Chief Minister and the Cooperation Minister in this regard, he said.

Consumerfed Chairman Joy Thomas and Managing Director Riji G. Nair and FCI official B.K. Philip also took part in the discussions, the Minister said.

The State will be allowed extra time to lift the food grains that was allotted to it earlier. The quality of food grains to be distributed will be ensured and the Centre was willing to train the officials of the State in quality checking and assurance schemes, he said.

A request for support from Consumerfed for opening 100 Triveni stores and a few cold storages was being considered by the Union Ministry, he added.

(This article was published on November 20, 2012)
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