Mamata questions UPA’s hurry to pass food security bill

Kolkata, June 3 (IANS) West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Monday questioned the Congress-led UPA government on its ‘hurriedness’ to pass the National Food Security Bill.

‘A special session of parliament is reportedly being convened shortly to consider and pass the National Food Security Bill. Is this the right time for UPA-II to rush through and legislate on a major issue, particularly when the general election is knocking at the door? That too, by a government whose majority is in doubt after the exit of AITC and DMK from the UPA-II,’ Banerjee said on Facebook.

Accusing the UPA of unjustly politicising the issue, Banerjee said the cash transfer scheme in lieu of foodgrain would be of no use due to lack of banking infrastructure.

‘These promises are nothing but political gimmick,’ said the Trinamool Congress chief.

‘We have been emphasising that the entire financial burden for development of infrastructure and storage facilities must be borne entirely by the central government and any shortfall of allocation of food-grains to the states should be made over and protected by the central government through additional allocation,’ Banerjee emphasised.

‘There must also be explicit provision for providing adequate foodgrain to meet requirements at times of overall shortage. Food security allowances will not remove hunger in times of foodgrain shortage,’ Banerjee observed.

She also said that the states must be made the implementation agency by entrusting them with the identification of the beneficiaries.

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