Govt says adequate food stock to keep check on prices

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New Delhi, Nov 14 (UNI) With inflation having declined to a single digit ahead of state elections, the government today assured there will be adequate availability of foodgrains, edible oils and sugar to check price rise.

It said various government agencies had procured 140.61 lakh tonnes of paddy till November 10 compared to 119.63 lakh tonnes in the previous season.

The Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution said the country will have a wheat stock of 71.86 lakh tonnes on April one, 2009 against buffer norms of 40 lakh tonnes. Similarly, rice stock was at a comfortable level of 65.94 lakh tonnes on October one against the buffer norm of 52 lakh tonnes.

It said in view of the comfortable position, the Central government had made additional allocation of foodgrains to various states both for targeted public distribution system (TPDS) and under the above poverty line (APL) quota.

Earlier, the government had taken a slew of measures to strengthen domestic supplies by banning export of non-basmati rice from April one and levying a custom of Rs 8,000 tonnes on basmati rice export on May 10.

Meanwhile, the government has decided to release 52 lakh tonnes of free sale sugar for the October-December quarter against 42 lakh tonnes released in the corresponding period last year.

It said upto 10 lakh tonnes of subsidised edible oils will be distributed this financial year, adding it has already started doing it in 12 states and union territories.

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