Bhopal: The government had bought 10.40 lakh quintals of onions last year from the farmers at MSP. Of it, only 2.78 lakh quintals could be sold and the remaining 7.62 lakh quintals were destroyed as it was unfit for human consumption, minister for cooperatives Vishwas Sarang told the House on Monday in reply to a question by Shailendra Patel. Sarang said that the government has drawn appropriate lessons from the last year’s loss and was taking precautions this time.
Patel, however, accused the government of trying to hide the corruption in the purchase and disposal of onions. Patel said that this year, the MARKFED had bought 8.76 lakh MT onions, of which only 8.49 lakh MTs has been handed over to the Civil Supplies Corporation and 49,000 kg onions has vanished into thin air.
The leader of opposition Ajay Singh said that last year, the government had started purchase of onions belatedly and this year too, it had done the same. He said that had the government started the process in April or May, it would have purchased onions from farmers. Now, it has purchased onions from traders. He said that the money spent on procuring onions did not come from the pockets of the chief minister or the ministers. It was the tax payer whose money was spent.