Food supply yet to resume in far-west

Dhangadhi, August 17:

Hilly districts in the far-western region are yet to receive food rations from Seti Zonal Office of Nepal Food Corporation despite the government’s decision to provide 500 quintals of rice to each VDC.

“A total of 113 quintals of rice has been sent to Sanphebagar of Achham district this week,” Indra Kamal Thapa, chief of the zonal office of NFC, said. He said that rice was also supplied to NFC’s depots at Kamalbazaar and Binayak in Achham, as per an agreement reached with political parties.

Though the Ministry of Industries, Commerce and Supplies decided to supply 500 quintals of rice under special quota, food grains have not been supplied to districts of the region except Achham.

“Though we have been starving for a long time, NFC has not sent rice to our village. People in rural areas have been reeling under food shortage, but the government seems to centre only on district headquarters Chainpur,” Aphilal Okheda, a local of Bajhang district, said.

However, zonal chief Thapa said rice could not be sent to Bajhang because District Food Management Committee had not called for supply of rice yet. “Rice under special quotas will be released only after we get recommendations from such committees,” Thapa added. Locals said the NFC office in Chainpur was not distributing rice though it had a stock of 200 quintals.

Of 1,000 quintals of rice allocated to the district, NFC has supplied only 300 quintals to the district through helicopters. According to the NFC, the Kolti depot still has 165 quintals of rice in stock.

“Though the government has decided to supply 500 quintals of rice to each VDC, the NFC has not bothered to supply rice in Baitadi district,” Nara Bahadur Bhandari of Gwalek said. NFC depots in Baitadi and Darchula, which were displaced during the period of insurgency, have not been reinstated.