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Strenthening of cooperatives is crucial for taming inflation : K V Thomas
Wednesday, 02 November, 2011, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Concerned over high food inflation, the food ministry said on Monday that it would brainstorm with the finance and agriculture ministries to identify areas putting pressure on prices and work out a solution to contain inflation.

"We are concerned about inflation. We will sit together (with finance and agriculture minister) and discuss the areas causing inflation," K V Thomas, minister of state for consumer affairs, food and public distribution (independent charge), said.

Food prices rose to a six-month high of 11.43 per cent for the week ending October 15, driven by soaring milk and vegetable prices.

Thomas, who had earlier met UPA(United Progressive Alliance) chairperson Sonia Gandhi for presenting the issue of inflation, said his ministry would seek the help of cooperatives in controlling inflation.

"We will use services of agri-cooperatives NCCF (National Cooperative Consumers' Federation of India Limited) and NAFED (National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Limited) to control food prices," the minister said.

Rajeev Aggarwal, secretary, consumer affairs, food and public distribution, said the ministry would propose more financial support to the NCCF and NAFED in the 12th Five-Year Plan (2012-17) so that they could provide consumer items to the people at a subsidised rate.

Agri-cooperative agencies NAFED and the NCCF played crucial role in providing onions at concessional prices to the people in Delhi when retail prices of the bulb had soared to Rs 80-85 a kg early this year.

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