UPA’s food bill: Sonia’s headache, BJP’s victory

Congress chief Sonia Gandhi is spending sleepless nights at 10 Janpath now a days. Her pet project and a sure shot formula to win votes, Food Secuity Bill, is constantly being stalled in the parliament by the opposition. So much for the effort with which she pushed the UPA government to bring it through an ordinance.

It has been more than a week since parliament is constantly being disrupted by BJP over the missing coal scam files. Although the CBI had initially placed the number of missing files to 157, the total number of files missing have now been stated as 225. How much CBI is exaggerating is another matter.

Since the monsoon session began on Aug 5, both the houses of the parliament had been functioning. A number of bills had been introduced and passed, including the Companies Bill. But for food bill, the clock is not moving. The government introduced food bill in the parliament and expected to pass it in the current session. Precisely by Aug 20 which happens to be the birth anniversary of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi

Oddly enough, BJP did not oppose the food bill in its entirety. The party, however, raised objection on 286 points and sought amendment to the bill. The apparent PM candidate of BJP and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi was the person who openly expressed his objection to the bill and demanded a chief minister’s meeting before the bill is taken up in the parliament.

What is happening is not that BJP is disrupting the parliament over missing coal files because it thinks that the issue is important. Moreover, what joy it will bring to the BJP who may also be found guilty in the scam due to the coal allocations during NDA rule?

But what actually is happening is that the BJP is trying to scuttle the food bill without falling in the bad light.

“The food security plan would cause a burden of Rs 1,25,000 crore on the exchequer ever year and would require 61.23 million tonnes of food grains. The bill provides for allocation of five kg food grain (per person) at fixed rate of Rs 3 (rice), Rs 2 (wheat) and Rs 1 (coarse grains) per kg to 75 percent of the country’s rural population and 50 percent of population in urban India.”

Although Sonia Gandhi tried to reinforce her position by getting Congress ruled states implement food bill in their respective states, the victory is ultimately BJP’s.



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