A day after the centre decided to convert excess foodgrains into hand sanitisers, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi has slammed the government saying the rice that should belong to the poor is being used to clean the hands of the rich.
“After all, when will the poor in India wake up? You’re dying of hunger and they are busy cleaning the hands of the rich by converting foodgrains that belongs to you, into sanitisers,” Gandhi tweeted.
आख़िर हिंदुस्तान का ग़रीब कब जागेगा? आप भूखे मर रहे हैं और वो आपके हिस्से के चावल से सैनीटाईज़र बनाकर अमीरों के हाथ की सफ़ाई में लगे हैं।https://t.co/5NjoMmsJnK
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) April 21, 2020
To balance the supply of hand sanitisers in the market, the petroleum ministry on Monday (April 20) decided to utilise the excess foodgrains stocked in central godowns to manufacture ethanol.
“It was approved that the surplus rice available with Food Corporation of India may be converted to ethanol for utilization in making alcohol-based hand-sanitizers and in blending for Ethanol Blended Petrol programme,” read a government statement.
The Centre’s decision comes after it promised to feed around 800 million poor people across the country for the next three months.
An official of the petroleum ministry said the Food Corporation of India has around three times more stock than the existing buffer norms.
According to the Stranded Workers Action Network (Swan), a group of researchers from Azim Premji University and Libtech India, 96 per cent of the stranded migrants have not yet received free ration as promised by the government.
(With inputs from agencies)