Moneycontrol PRO
you are here: HomeNewsIndia

FCI transports 60 lakh tonnes of grains to consuming states in April, beats record of March 2014

April 30, 2020 / 08:47 PM IST

Food Corporation of India (FCI) transported 60 lakh tonnes of foodgrains from its godowns during April, up 57 percent from the previous high in March 2014, across the country for distribution through ration shops, the government said on Thursday.

To provide relief to the people during the current coronavirus pandemic, the Centre is supplying 5 kg of foodgrains per person per month to 80 crore people free of cost for the next three months under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY).

This is over and above the normal quota of 5 kg per person per month to around 80 crore people at Rs 2-3 per kg under the National Food Security Act (NFSA), which was passed in 2013 to give legal entitlement.

State-owned FCI, the government's nodal agency for procurement and distribution of foodgrains, has "moved 60 lakh tonnes of foodgrains in the month of April 2020 surpassing the highest-ever single month movement of 38 lakh tonnes achieved during March 2014 by 57 percent".

This is more than two times the normal monthly average of about 30 lakh tonnes, an official statement said.

COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

View more
How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

View more

The quantity includes road movement of about 1 lakh tonnes to Kashmir Valley and Leh/Ladakh as well as about 0.81 lakh tonnes to northeastern states of Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya. About 0.1 lakh tonnes stocks were also moved to the islands of Andaman and Lakshadweep by sea.

Amid the constraints created by the spread of COVID-19, FCI unloaded about 58 lakh tonnes of foodgrain stocks in various consuming states during this month.

Bihar received maximum stocks of about 7.7 lakh tonnes, followed by Karnataka with about 7 lakh tonnes.

"With COVID-19 situation remaining very dynamic and frequent additions to hotspots and containment zones, this has been particularly challenging as many of the unloading centres have been located in such areas," the food ministry said.

However, FCI has been able to manage unloading of foodgrain stocks even in affected areas and distribution of the same to states for supply under the public distribution system (PDS) with active cooperation of state governments.

The overall lifting of foodgrains from FCI under the PMGKAY has reached 60 lakh tonnes, which is 50 percent of the total allotment of about 120 lakh tonnes.

"Enough foodgrain stocks have been positioned across the country by FCI to meet any demand of state governments for feeding the people affected due to COVID-19," the statement said.

Meanwhile, procurement of wheat for the central pool crossed 130 lakh tonnes, with Punjab leading the chart with 68 lakh tonnes followed by Haryana (30 lakh tonnes) and Madhya Pradesh (25 lakh tonnes).

With steady inflows of foodgrains through procurement, the overall central pool stocks position remains stable even after release of about 122 lakh tonnes stocks under various schemes including NFSA and PMGKAY, the statement said.

first published: Apr 30, 2020 08:40 pm