Goa Congress seeks Guv’s intervention in foodgrain ‘smuggling’

Panaji:  Goa Congress unit has sought intervention of the Goa Governor in regards to alleged foodgrain smuggling racket busted by the coastal Police and has demanded a high-level inquiry under a retired High Court judge into the matter.

The Congress on Monday submitted a memorandum to Goa Governor Goa P.S. Sreedharan Pillai demanding his immediate intervention on this issue.

Leader of Opposition Yuri Alemao, Quepem MLA Altone D’Costa and Senior Vice President of Congress Party M. K. Shaikh were present.

“The seizure of huge quantities of rice and wheat from a private godown during the raids conducted by the Crime Branch has exposed the scam of pilferage of foodgrains, procured by the Government for Public Distribution System,” the memorandum stated.

“This is a matter of serious concern and needs to be investigated thoroughly. We had earlier brought to your notice the huge wastage of foodgrains like toor dal and sugar in our earlier Memorandum. We would like to bring to your notice that the government has no proper mechanism in place to monitor the procurement, storage and distribution of various Commodities,” it said.

“It is a matter of concern that a loss of almost Rs 5-6 crore to the State treasury is incurred due to wastage of foodgrains. We demand for a high-level inquiry under retired High Court Judge of all Procurements and Distribution of food grains and commodities from 2020 onwards,” it further said.

The Crime Branch of Goa Police on last Tuesday had arrested five persons for allegedly stealing rice and wheat from Civil Supply Department’s godown for “smuggling” in Karnataka.

The police have seized 761 rice bags and 253 bags containing wheat in this connection.

Police have said that the accused persons were smuggling rice bags and wheat bags stolen from Civil Supply godowns from Goa. However, the Civil Supply Department has clarified that there is no ‘mismatch’ in their storage and supply.

Interacting with reporters, Yuri Alemao said that high-level inquiry under retired High Court judge should be conducted into this matter.

–IANS

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