Thomas apprises Sonia of Food Bill
New Delhi: Food Minister K V Thomas today met Congress President and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and apprised her of the progress made in the proposed National Food Security Bill, sources said.
This is the first meeting of Thomas with the UPA Chairperson after her return from abroad after surgery. “The minister briefed her the progress made in the proposed Food Bill and informed her that the draft Bill has been circulated to all Chief Ministers for comments,” according to highly placed sources.
Thomas also apprised her of various other initiatives his ministry is taking in areas such as augmentation of storage capacity under various schemes including the Private Entrepreneur Guarantee scheme. He also briefed her on the efforts being made to ensure prompt and uninterrupted supply of foodgrains to remote areas, especially in the North Eastern states. The ministry is also working on creating awareness against food wastages.
The draft National Food Security Bill seeks to provide legal entitlement to subsidised foodgrains to 75 per cent of the country`s rural population, and 50 per cent in urban India. Under the proposed Act which Congress had promised to institutionalise in its manifesto for the 2009 General Elections, the government has divided the beneficiaries of the food security law into two categories. These are: priority households (below poverty line families) and general households (above poverty line families).