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Bharat Dal and Bharat Atta
In a proactive move to address the escalating costs of essential food items, the Central Government of India has launched an initiative to make pulses and wheat flour more accessible and affordable. Under the brands Bharat Dal and Bharat Atta, the government is retailing chana dal (split chickpeas) at Rs. 60 per kg and wheat flour at Rs. 27.50 per kg, respectively. This measure, initiated in July, is aimed at easing the financial burden on the general population.
Availability and Outlets
Consumers can conveniently purchase Bharat Dal and Bharat Atta at the subsidized rates from various outlets. These include the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED), National Consumers Cooperative Federation of India Limited (NCCF), and Kendriya Bhandar. To ensure wider accessibility, the products are also being sold through 800 mobile vans deployed across the country.
'Bharat Dal' Chana Dal Distribution
‘Bharat Dal,’ marketed under the brand name, is a significant component of this initiative. Priced at Rs. 60 per kg for a 1 kg pack, it is being distributed through the retail outlets mentioned earlier. The government has strategically released buffer stocks of major pulses, including chana dal, to regulate market prices and shield the public from price volatility.
'Bharat Atta' Wheat Flour Initiative
In addition to ‘Bharat Dal,’ the government introduced ‘Bharat Atta,’ retailing at Rs. 27.50 per kg. This wheat flour is available at over 2,000 outlets of NAFED, NCCF, and Kendriya Bhandars. The government plans to allocate 2.5 lakh tonnes of wheat from the Food Corporation of India (FCI) at Rs. 21.50 per kg to NAFED, NCCF, and Kendriya Bhandars, which will then convert it into wheat flour under the brand ‘Bharat Atta.’
Buffer Stocks and Price Stabilization
To counteract the fluctuating prices of essential commodities, the government maintains buffer stocks of major pulses, such as chana, tur, urad, moong, and masur, under the Price Stabilization Fund (PSF). These buffer stocks are strategically released into the market to moderate prices and ensure stability. The release of chana dal under the ‘Bharat Dal’ brand is a key component of this approach.
To enhance domestic availability, the government has kept the import of tur and urad under the ‘Free Category’ until March 2024. Additionally, the import duty on masur has been reduced. These measures are aimed at securing a steady supply of pulses in the domestic market.
Onion @ 25 Rs
In response to the recent increase in onion prices due to delays in the arrival of the kharif crop, the government has taken steps to protect consumers. Onions are now available at a subsidized price of Rs. 25 per kg. The Department of Consumer Affairs is overseeing the sale of onions through retail outlets and mobile vans operated by NCCF, NAFED, Kendriya Bhandar, and other state-controlled cooperatives.
The introduction of Bharat Dal and Bharat Atta at subsidized rates reflects the government’s commitment to ensuring food security and affordability for the general population. With strategic distribution through various outlets and mobile vans, these essential food items are within reach for a broader segment of society, contributing to the overall well-being of the nation.
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