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‘Central policy responsible for rise in wheat prices’

As the city readies to host an international seminar on wheat and its products,a former vice-president of the All India Roller Flour Millers Association (AIRFMA) alleged today that the Centre’s policies were responsible for the rise in prices of wheat.

Written by Express News Service | Ahmedabad | Published: February 19, 2010 1:53 am

As the city readies to host an international seminar on wheat and its products,a former vice-president of the All India Roller Flour Millers Association (AIRFMA) alleged today that the Centre’s policies were responsible for the rise in prices of wheat.

On the even of the two-day seminar on “Wheat and Wheat Products-Towards Millennium Development Goals”,Vinod Kapoor said there was no shortage of wheat in the country,but restrictive release of the commodity had contributed to the price rise.

Addressing the media,Kapoor said the buffer stocks in government warehouses across the country would go up to 19 million metric tonnes by April 1 with the arrival of new crop.

At present,India’s annual wheat production is 80 MMT,and according to Kapoor,it must go to 90 MMT to meet the requirements by 2020.

He emphasised the need for developing a mechanism to bring the wheat prices on par with the international prices,saying this will not only benefit farmers,but also stabilise the prices in the country.

Meanwhile,the secretary of the Gujarat Roller Flour Millers’ Association,Trilok Agrawal,criticised the UPA government of supplying only 1,600 metric tonnes of wheat to Gujarat per month despite a demand of 50,000 metric tonnes. According to him,monthly consumption of wheat in Gujarat is 1.5 lakh metric tonnes.

He said the state’s wheat production,which was 32 lakh metric tonnes,went up to 72 lakh metric tonnes with Narmada water flowing to agricultural fields.

This season,the production is expected to go up to 80 lakh metric tonnes with further canal irrigation,he added.

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