'No irregularities in Food dept'

MP Karandlaje has made baseless allegations, says Minister Khader

 Food and Civil Supplies Minister U T Khader denied allegations by Udupi-Chikkamagaluru MP Shobha Karandlaje that there have been huge irregularities in the Food department.

Addressing reporters on Sunday, he said that MP, with a desire to be in the limelight, has been making baseless allegations against the state government and its departments every now and then.

Cheap publicity

“Karandlaje’s statements in press conferences are the result of a hope for cheap publicity. The leaders in the Opposition too have not raised the issues, referred by her, in the Assembly. If there is an element of truth in Karandlaje’s allegations, she must produce evidence,” Khader demanded.

“There are no misappropriations in the Food department. As a matter of fact, the irregularities took place in the Food department during her tenure as the Food and Civil Supplies Minister under the BJP government in Karnataka. The bogus ration card mafia was controlled by scrapping the bogus cards, saving crores of rupees for the exchequer. But the MP is misleading the public,” he added.

The minister took a dig at the Udupi-Chikkamagaluru MP commenting that Karandlaje has probably forgotten about the suo motu case that was filed by former Lokayukta Santosh Hegde regarding the irregularities in the Food department during her tenure as the minister. “Karandlaje has no moral right to point her fingers at the chief minister,” said Khader.

Urging the Central government to waive the loans availed by farmers from nationalised banks, he referred to the farmers’ loan waiver to the tune of Rs 75,000 crore by the earlier UPA government. He welcomed the state government’s decision of waiving of farmer’s loans in cooperative banks.

The minister, meanwhile, pointed out that the provision of subsidy by the Central government to the state towards the supply of foodgrains, has already been ensured by the earlier UPA government through the Food Security Bill. This fund, along with the state funds, is utilised to provide free foodgrains to the beneficiaries under Anna Bhagya scheme, he added.

Iftar by Pejawar seer

Khader also hailed the gesture of Paryaya Pejawar Mutt seer Sri Vishwesha Theertha of organising an Iftar meet at the Sri Krishna Mutt in Udupi. “The seer had personally served the participants fruits, juice and snacks. The move will help in fostering communal harmony,” said the minister.

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