Sopore: Rotten food grains at FCSCA store turn into health hazard

More than 10,000 quintals of rotten rice at a government store in Sopore town of north Kashmir has turned into a health hazard for people living in the area.

Residents of Krankshivan area of the north Kashmir town said authorities have failed to dispose of the decayed food grains, which as per an official communication, was lying unattended for years.

The residents complained that a stink emanating from the store owned by Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs (FCSCA) department was becoming unbearable now. With the onset of summer, locals fear the store could now become a breeding ground for diseases.

“Unfortunately, the administration has failed to take call on the issue for years together,” said a local.

Though the department has held several meetings and had constituted a committee headed by Deputy Commissioner (DC) Baramulla to recommend on disposing of the rice, locals are yet to get any relief despite passing of several years.

As per the official data, Tehsil Sales Officer (TSO) Sopore had in 2016 submitted the details of the decayed food grains to the department.

Almost three years later, the DC-led committee visited the spot in September 2019, however it failed to recommend on disposing off the rotten food grains. In April this year, Assistant Director FCSCA, Baramulla again reminded the Deputy Commissioner about the role of the committee headed by for recommending on disposing of the decayed grains.

Amid hue and cry by the residents, the Director FCSCA also wrote to Commissioner Secretary of the department in April for his directions to the Deputy Commissioner Baramulla to recommend on disposing of the stocks.

The communication states that the food grains were found to be “substandard and deteriorated” in 2007 as intimated by the Assistant Director.

“A committee was constituted for shifting of the food grains and clarification was sought about the cause of deterioration and involvement or otherwise of the concerned storekeeper,” reads the communication.

But, the Director’s communication reads that despite reports submitted by the committee in the past, no directions were passed by the administrative department regarding disposing of the grains.

Months after the Director took up the matter with Commissioner Secretary the DC-led committee visited the store again last week to make on-the-spot assessment. But so far, there has been no headway on the issues pending for years and coming up as a health hazard in the area.

Deputy Commissioner (DC) Baramulla, GN Itoo said they have prepared a report and submitted it to the FCSCA for further action.