We Store Grains For FCI, Do Not Buy From Farmers: Adani Group

Farmer Unions have accused the Adani Group of building storage grain facilities to sell later for a higher price.

2 min read
Billionaire Gautam Adani.

The Adani Group has responded to allegations by farmers groups on hoarding food grains in storage facilities by saying that “it neither buys food grains from farmers nor decides the pricing of food grains”, reported PTI.

Farmer Unions have blamed the Adani Group for building storage grain facilities to sell for a higher price on a later date. Allegations have been made in the farmers’ protests against Adani and Ambani saying the farmer laws -- which the government maintains gives farmers the freedom to sell their crops to anyone -- were made to favour them.

“Using ongoing issues for mudslinging is a clear attempt to not only tarnish the reputation of a responsible corporate but also misguide public opinion and hurt their sentiment,” Adani Group said.

The Adani Group said that it develops and operates grain silos for the Food Corporation of India (FCI), and has been doing so since 2005 after winning ‘competitive and transparent tender’ by the Government of India, reported PTI. “The company has no role in deciding the volume of storage as well as pricing of grain as it only a service/ infrastructure provider for the FCI,” it said in a statement posted on its Twitter handle.

FCI Pays Private Storage Facilities A Fee For The PDS System

The FCI pays private partners a fee for building storage facilities for food grains as part of a public-private partnership arrangement where FCI buys food grains from farmers and stores them in silos built by these private ventures. The ownership, marketing and distributing rights of the commodity only belong to FCI, reports PTI.

“We do not own any food grains procured from farmers, and are in no way connected to the pricing of grains,” said the conglomerate emphasising that FCI controls the procurement and movement of food grains for the Public Distribution System (PDS), reports PTI.

Private rail lines that it built as part of these tenders are to facilitate the movement of grains from silo units to their distribution centres across India, the statement posted by the Adani Group on Twitter said.

The statement said the FCI awarded such contracts to modernise the storage and transport infrastructure in the country to safely store food grains and to supply quality commodity to the PDS system.

FCI, by partnering with private investors, has commissioned high tech silos equipped with latest fumigation and preservation techniques for two to four years. These grains are dispatched in bulk through special trains across India, reported PTI.

Since inception, private storage facilities have an estimated average receipt of 400,000 tonnes in five years from farmers, reported PTI.

(With inputs from PTI)

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