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Tur dal worth Rs 29 lakh found adulterated; probe ordered

Ahmedabad: Tur dal worth Rs 29 lakh has been found adulterated during an inspection at a warehouse in Gujarat’s Junagadh district, prompting the state government to order a probe Thursday, said officials.

An FIR has been registered against seven persons in connection with the incident, they said.

This tur dal stock was procured by Gujarat State Civil Supplies Corporation Ltd from the farmers of Junagadh on behalf of central government entity National Agriculture Co- operative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED), said Managing Director of GSCSCL, Manish Bhardwaj.

While the government claimed the guilty will be brought to justice, Congress leaders alleged it was an “insiders job” and people sitting at “high places” were involved in it.

The irregularity came to light two days ago when adulterated tur dal was found in 3,241 gunny bags of 50 kg each at a warehouse in Pithadia village of Junagadh district.

“That stock was procuredby us in January at APMC market of Keshod town in Junagadh. During our inspection at the warehouse, substandard tur dal was found mixed with good quality tur dal in 3,241 bags.

“The stock was worth Rs 29 lakh. We then sent those bags back to Keshod APMC and launched our probe,” said Bhardwaj.

Meanwhile, Gujarat Civil Supplies Minister Jayesh Radadia said an FIR against seven persons, who were allegedly behind the adulteration during tur dal procurement, has been registered in Keshod.

“Our MD Manish Bhardwaj was in Keshod today to conduct an inquiry. I want to say that tur dal procurement was conducted in transparent manner.

“Thus, we want to probe how such thing has happened and who were behind it. We will not spare any one found guilty,” warned Radadiya.

According to Bhardwaj, some persons behind this alleged scam have been already identified.

“We have learned that a labour contractor, some merchants, graders and APMC manager might be behind this. We have seized the stock and started a detailed inquiry in it,” said the IAS officer.

“We have procured tur dal worth Rs 10.62 crore through this (Keshod) APMC. Of that, only 3,241 bags having tur dal worth Rs 29 lakh were found adulterated. The remaining stock is of good quality,” he said.

Congress MLA from Junagadh, Harshad Ribadiya, and the party’s Kisan Cell leader, Pal Ambaliya, visited the Keshod APMC and demanded a thorough probe into the entire episode.

“Only lower rung people have been booked while people sitting on high places, who are actually involved in it, have not been touched,” claimed Ambaliya.

Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel assured strict action against the culprits.