Central Government Launches ‘Bharat Atta’ Ahead Of Diwali
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A brand new wheat flour scheme called ‘Bharat Atta’ was launched by the government ahead of Diwali, at the cost of INR 27.5 per kilo. A fortified, nutrition-rich flour made with wheat, rice and pulses, the atta is said to be rich in protein, iron and other essential nutrients. The main aim of the scheme is to provide affordable wheat flour to those below poverty line as well as those struggling to cope up with the rising costs of essential commodities. About to be implemented through the Public Distribution System (PDS), 2.5 lakh metric tonnes of wheat will be sold to central government agencies at INR 21.5 per kilo, that will be made available to target consumers at an additional six Rupees added to it.

In order to reach a larger number of people, Bharat Atta will also be sold through cooperatives such as Kendriya Bhandar, National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) and Network for Certification and Conservation of Forests (NCCF). Using resources like 800 mobile vans and 2000-odd outlets as a means of distributing the flour, Union Food and Consumer Affairs minister, Piyush Goyal flagged off the first 100 mobile vans at the Kartavya Path in New Delhi. Preceding the launch of Bharat Atta, a pilot sale of 18,000 tonnes of wheat flour was distributed through the same cooperative channels under the Price Stabilisation Fund scheme, which sold the product at INR 29.5 per kilo.

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In addition to this, Consumer Affairs Secretary, Rohit Kumar addressed the media with information about allocations – stating that the NAFED and NCCF shall receive one lakh tonnes of the flour whereas Kendriya Bhandar shall be allotted 50,000 tonnes. Along with the sale of Bharat Atta at a subsidised cost, other food commodities like chana dal (Bharat Dal) and onions are also expected to be sold at a lower retail cost. With the onset of the festive season and the rising cost of wheat-based products, the secretary also added that measures were underway to curb inflation of commodities that show signs of a rise in price.