A day after Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar targeted the Centre over check in the prices of pulses by using a remark made by PM Narendra Modi—na khaunga na khane doonga (I will not eat neither will I let you eat).
Coming to Modi’s rescue, two Union ministers blamed the Bihar government for decline in production of pulses.
“The Centre wrote many letters to six state governments, including Bihar government to take benefit of ‘Price Stabilisation Fund’ to provide succour to consumers, but the Nitish Kumar government deliberately did not utilise it,” agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh told the media.
“Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Delhi and West Bengal,w which have used the ‘Price Stabilisation Fund’, are now selling pulses at Rs 120 to Rs 130 per kg through retail outlet,” he said.
The price stabilisation fund is raised by the particular state to which the central government contributes 50% of the money. Food minister Ramvilas Paswan charged Kumar with not taking suitable steps to check prices of pulses. This was done to sully the image of the Modi government during polls, he said.
“If it was so worried about the people, the government could have imported pulses as there is ‘zero’ import duty on it. Who had stopped it from doing so?” ased Paswan.
“This apart, the government didn’t inform the Centre about pulses when it was planning to import it”” Paswan said, slamming the Nitish Kumar government.
Rival alliances in election-bound Bihar have blamed each other for the rise in prices f pulses.