India has enough food to feed poor
India will have enough foodgrain stockpiles to feed its poor for at least a year-and-a-half as the reserves are likely to further balloon after record harvests in the South Asian nation that has been locked down to check the spread of the covid-19 (coronavirus).
There will be no food shortage in the second-most populous country, D.V. Prasad, chairman of state-run Food Corporation of India (FCI), a government agency at the heart of the world’s largest public food distribution program.
It will have 100 million tons in warehouses across India by the end of April, compared with an annual requirement of 50 million to 60 million tons under various welfare programs for the poor. India is likely to produce record 292 million tons of food grains in 2019-20.
“There is absolutely no need to worry as far as the availability of wheat and rice is concerned in any part of the country,” Prasad said. Still, fair price shops in many states don’t have the capacity to hold stocks equal to several months of their needs, he said. Food minister Ram Vilas Paswan said last week that the beneficiaries of the Public Distribution System can buy six months of their quota of subsidized grain immediately.