Critique on Food Security Bill
D Dhanuraj
Critique on Food Security Bill Download as PDF
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The proposed food security bill does not sync with the clamour for provision for food security (or insecurity) in this country. The bill proposes layers of administrative mechanisms to feed the poor in the country but fails to reflect on the supply chain management which is the backbone of the. It carries the debate of how many calories of intake to how many times one should have the meals; all ending in the ludicrous paternalistic state and its socialistic dogmatism. What it fails to discuss is the production, procurement and distribution of the food grains that essentially serve the poor at the remotest of the areas in this country. The purpose and philosophy of the proposed legalisation is laudable but the tools used are not addressing the root causes.

India does possess a decent production of food grains to serve her population. But the leakage, corruption and lack of infrastructure have resulted in wastage of food grains while poor starves. The middle class and the above have better access and options to avail the food grains while the poor are destined to perish at the hands of state machinery due to the poor management of resources. The root cause of such a malady is the inefficiency in warehousing, poor transportation of food grains, inadequate supply chains to offload the stored food grains, lack of processing units and technologies etc. the need of the hour is to find the remedies and sustainable solutions to these issues rather than stressing up the already worn out FCIs and civil supplies mechanisms.

The Bill recognises the need to reach out to the poor and the need to ensure the supply of food grains. In the same stroke, it covers up the failures in the distribution mechanism by proposing penalties, dispute settlement forums and an over arching bureaucracy. It does not want to admit the faultiness of the departments and existing government mechanisms to meet their mandates over the decades thus allowing the bill to fool its beneficiaries. What the bill could have suggested are; opening up retail sector, inviting investments in warehousing and processing domains attract the best players to ensure the supply chain management and opening up of the agriculture market. That would have resulted in better quality and sustained supplies to the beneficiaries where as the Government would have saved itself from going to fiscal problems by funding a leakage program like this.
 

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