Govt to sell rice received in grant for quake survivorsThe government is preparing to sell the rice offered by some countries in grant for earthquake survivors after it started to rot.
The government is preparing to sell the rice offered by some countries in grant for earthquake survivors after it started to rot.
Bangladesh had provided 10,000 tonnes of rice, while China had donated 130,000 tonnes. China had also provided a quintal each of edible oil and salt.
However, Nepal Food Corporation (NFC) has failed to deliver the products effectively to targeted areas.
NFC has claimed the supply was delayed due to their compulsion to follow the Public Procurement Act that seeks appointment of a supplier through competitive bidding.
Transportation disturbances due to the ongoing Tarai unrest and fuel shortages as a result of India-imposed trade blockade also delayed the supply, it said.
According to NFC, of the 10,000 tonnes of rice donated by Bangladesh, NFC still has 7,800 tonnes in its warehouses in Lahan (350 tonnes), Kathmandu (1,600 tonnes) and Jhapa (5,850 tonnes), according to NFC Spokesperson Shreemani Khanal.
Khanal said the Supply Ministry some two weeks ago asked the corporation to sell the rice received from China. He said they plan to sell salt to Salt Trading Corporation, and edible oil and rice through NFC outlets.
Khanal said they had sent the rice sample to the Department of Food Technology and Quality Control for lab test. “If the report shows the rice is fit for consumption, the NFC board will fix a price for selling,” he said.
Bishnu Lamsal, secretary at the Supply Ministry, confirmed they had directed NFC to sell the grant rice as per the direction from the Home Ministry.
“As the Home Ministry told us there was no demand for the products and they could rot if stored for a long, we have asked the NFC to sell them,” Lamsal said.
Home Ministry’s joint-secretary Rameshwor Dangal too acknowledged it has asked the NFC to take necessary steps to sell remaining quantity of the rice received in grant from Bangladesh.