New Delhi: Food and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar on Tuesday said the onus of supplying foodgrains meant for poor lay with state governments while stating it was for the court to take appropriate decision on an alleged food scam in Uttar Pradesh.
"My job is to procure (foodgrains) and allocate it to the states. The states` job is to allot it to the needy people," Pawar told the Times Now channel.
"The issue (of food scam in Uttar Pradesh) has been raised by the the court and I think it will take an appropriate decision," he said.
Last week, the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court had directed the state agencies to refer to the CBI in order to proceed expeditiously with investigation into the alleged multi-crore foodgrain scam in Uttar Pradesh and conclude the same within six months.
The order was passed by a division bench comprising Justices Devi Prasad Singh and S C Chaurasia while allowing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by one Vishwanath Chaturvedi, seeking direction for a CBI probe into the scam.
The petitioner drew the attention of the court towards what he claimed was a high degree of corruption prevailing in Uttar Pradesh.
Under this foodgrains meant for BPL card holders covered under schemes such as Antyodaya, Jawahar Rozagar Yogana and mid-day meals was smuggled not only outside the state but outside the country, he had contended.
Each family under the below poverty line (BPL) category are eligible every month for 35 kg of foodgrains at a subsidised rate of Rs 4.15 per kg for wheat and Rs 5.65 per kg for rice from the Public Distribution System (PDS).
Under Antodaya Anna Yojna (AAY), each family is eligible for wheat at Rs 2 per kg and rice at Rs 3 per kg.