Drop in quantity of damaged foodgrains: Govt



New Delhi: There has been a sharp fall in the quantity of damaged foodgrains over the past decade, government told the Lok Sabha Tuesday.

"In the year 2002-03, the quantity of damaged foodgrains was about 1.35 lakh tonnes. The damage has come down to 0.014 lakh tonnes," Food Minister K V Thomas said during Question Hour.

measures so that no rotting of foodgrains takes place.

"About five years back we started with about 55 to 60 lakh tonnes of (storage) capacity, which has now gone up very much and we were able to store almost all the foodgrains which come to FCI," he said.

To questions on higher wheat prices in Punjab compared to Haryana and Rajasthan, Thomas said states of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and the Union Territory of Chandigarh, it is the MSP price plus the state's taxes.

"I know the state tax in Punjab is to the tune of 14.5 per cent. I have no control over that. That tax they have to pay ... If the Punjab government withdraws or reduces their state taxes, prices will come down," he said.

On MSP for wheat, Thomas said the matter was before the Cabinet.

PTI