New Delhi, Aug 13: Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi has written a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh proposing a meeting of chief ministers be held on the food security law saying it is an issue that concerns both the Centre and state governments.
He alleged in the letter that poor families have been made "food insecure" through the ordinance which "does not fulfill the basic objectives of food security".
In his letter dated August 7, Modi charged that under the ordinance, "unworkable statutory responsibilities have been given to central and state governments" and the "number of beneficiaries has been fixed without specifying eligibility criteria and fix individual entitlements. Between different states, there could be wide regional disparities".
The standing committee of Parliament had in January, 2013 recommended that government should formulate eligibility criteria in consultation with state governments, according to Modi.
The letter said the ordinance proposes to reduce the entitlement of BPL families from 35 kg per family to only 25 kg per average family of 5 persons and added "this cannot be the objective of any food security legislation which reduces the entitlement of those who have been identified as being below the poverty line".
On the one hand, the Planning Commission has been claiming reduction in the number of BPL families but under the ordinance food support is provided to about 2/3 of the population. This illogicality requires to be discussed with states, Modi's letter said.