The government has procured or contracted for imports about 14.66 lakh tonnes of pulses to create a buffer stock, Parliament was informed today. “The government has approved creation of buffer up to 20 lakh tonnes of pulses. As on March 8, 2017, around 14.66 lakh tonnes of pulses have been procured or contracted for imports towards building the buffer,” Minister of State for Food and Consumer Affairs CR Chaudhary said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.
The government has contracted for imports 4.06 lakh tonnes of pulses for the buffer stock, he added. The government has approved engaging a professional Buffer Stock Management Agency (BSMA) for efficient management of the buffer stock including procurement, storage, maintenance and liquidation of the stock as per government directive from time to time, Chaudhary added.
“The agency for designing and managing the bid process has been selected. Contract for appointment is being finalised,” the minister said. Pulses production is estimated at record 22.14 million tonnes in the 2016-17 crop year as against about 16.5 million tonnes in the previous year. The annual domestic demand is about 24-25 million tonnes and the gap is met through imports.
The government had decided to create a buffer stock for market intervention in case of price rise.