1.38 lakh tonnes grains damaged in FCI godowns

JAIPUR, MAY 8. Over 1.38 lakhs tonnes of foodgrains, mainly wheat and rice, were damaged in FCI godowns all over the country in the past 3-4 years, Union Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution Minister Shanta Kumar said on Sunday.

``It is a very serious matter. This is due to utter failure of the management,'' Mr. Kumar told a news conference here.

He said nearly 2000 tonnes of damaged foodgrains stored in Rajasthan's FCI godowns would be released for feeding starved cattle in the desert state.

Reacting sharply, Rajasthan Minister for civil supplies Ramkishan Verma said ``we will get the foodgrains tested in laboratories. The quality has to be ensured.''

Mr. Kumar said FCI had been given directions to expedite the sale of old stock at the earliest and submit a status report to the ministry in this regard.