Kerala Kaumudi Online
Wednesday, 17 April 2024 5.45 PM IST

Relief for Supplyco


Supplyco, a fully-owned Government of Kerala undertaking firm was brought in not simply to provide food grains at lower prices to people. Supplyco is also entrusted to intervene in situations when market prices of essential food grains break the roof. There have been several cases of Supplyco proving to be a solace for people who were battered by the high price of food commodities in the market.

And now, after all these years of service, Supplyco has amassed a debt of Rs 1400 crores. Such backlogs can slow down any organization's progress and leave SupplyCo running with empty shelves.

First, the government should not incur such huge arrears. If the government takes care not to exceed the maximum debt of 200 crores, the people will benefit by being able to buy essential commodities at lower rates. Earlier, Food Minister G. R. Anil’s demand for additional allocation in the budget proved to be a futile exercise. This also led to the allegation that the allocation announced in the budget for the departments of the CPI ministers was feeble compared to other ministries. And now keeping this in mind, an additional amount of Rs 100 crore has been allowed to the CPI ministers, and it is a welcome move.

While replying to the public debate on the budget, Finance Minister K.N. Balagopal informed that the additional amount has been allocated. The food department will get 71 crores out of the additional 100 crores allocated. Other departments will also get 29 crores. With this, the allocation for the public distribution sector in the budget has increased from 1930 crores to 2001 crores.

In his speech, the Finance Minister also hinted that more money will be made available to Supplyco. The minister pointed out that although the budget allocation for KSRTC was 900 crores, in the current year around 4000 crores were given. The cabinet meeting decided to hike the prices of 13 items, including rice and sugar, which are provided at subsidized rates by Supplyco. This is considered as the government slowly moving away from its previously held stance on Supplyco.

Still, it is reassuring that Supplyco can offer subsidized products at 35 per cent less than the market price. Henceforth, it has been decided to change the price of subsidized products according to the rise and fall of the market price.

The Center has also adopted a policy of reducing subsidies and they have implemented it in the case of cooking gas. The Education Department owes Rs 250 crore to Supplyco for providing rice for the midday meal scheme. Steps should be taken to provide this as soon as possible.

If the finance ministry takes the initiative to pay off the dues, it won’t take that long for Supplyco to regain back its lost sheen. Many other issues including the unavailability of food items in Supplyco can also be sorted out easily.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet
consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat.
We respect your privacy. Your information is safe and will never be shared.