Railways is drawing up a plan to make milk available at railway stations across the country to promote its consumption, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said today.
Goyal said this after attending a high-level meeting chaired by Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari, Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh, representatives of Amul India and food safety body FSSAI to discuss issues and concerns of the dairy sector in the backdrop of the farmers agitation in Maharashtra that had led to severe shortage of milk in the state.
The agriculture ministry had mooted a proposal asking railways to make milk available at railway stations and at the meeting, sources said representatives from Amul India suggested that the national transporter could provide stalls to dairy companies or cooperatives where they could sell their products.
“Railways will soon take a call on the availability of milk at railway stations. We are going to discuss more on the issue with other ministries tomorrow to see how milk consumption can be increased in the country. Railways has also received a proposal from the agriculture ministry to make milk available at stations, we will take a decision in two to four days,” Goyal said.
Milk supply in Maharashtra was badly hit after thousands of dairy farmers launched a protest on Monday, demanding better price and subsidy of Rs 5 per litre. Tankers supplying milk to major cities including Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur, Nashik and others were blocked early morning leading to sudden crisis.
The farmers’ groups, led by Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana and Maharashtra Kisan Sabha, are demanding a GST waiver on butter and milk powder apart from the subsidy.