Union Food and Public Distribution Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said food inflation remained moderate over the last year due to various measures taken by the government. Increase in prices of pulses, mainly because of demand and supply gap, has been taken up by the government. “We are considering all possible measures to ensure availability of pulses at reasonable prices including its import,” he asserted. Seeking market intervention by the States to keep prices of essential commodities under check particularly pulses and edible oil, Paswan said his ministry had written to State Governments to make available these commodities through Civil Supplies Corporations/ Cooperative Societies outlets, especially to economically weaker sections, at reasonable prices. States have also been requested to take strict action against hoarding of these items. The Centre has convened a meeting of the States in June to discuss an action plan in this regard.
Paswan said that food grain management has improved. Additional storage capacity of more than 43,480 lakh MTs has been created in remote areas to keep three months food grain allocation. Shipping of rice from Andhra to Tripura through Bangladesh waterways and Andhra to Kerala through sea route have been made.