The Food Corporation of India has plans to set up two 25,000-tonne storage capacity silos at Kochi and Kozhikode for storage of food grains.

This would be set up in PPP mode with 25 per cent viability gap funding subject to Planning Commission’s approval, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said.

The Central Warehousing Corporation will set up a freight station on FACT land at nearby Eloor. A warehousing corporation godown will also be set up at Purakkad in Alapuzha and its construction will be taken up under the ‘Kuttanad package.’

When the Food Security Act takes effect, each State will have to ensure 4.5 lakh tonnes of storage capacity. Kerala has only 90,000 tonnes capacity, which has to be enhanced, Chandy said.

He said rice and wheat allotment to BPL cardholders is sufficient, while for APL card holders it needs to be enhanced from the present 15 kg to 25 kg as nearly 1.5 lakh ration card holders had been added from April 2012 to January 2013.

Union Minister for Consumer Affairs K.V. Thomas said the State’s needs would be looked into. A special officer has been appointed to procure rice as per the preference of the people of Kerala.

(This article was published on January 23, 2013)
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