Despite having a huge potential, Punjab is behind other states like Maharashtra, Gujarat which are leading in food processing sector, Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal said on Monday. In an apparent reference to the Congress-led Punjab government, Badal said the states which do not take benefit of central schemes offered by Ministry of Food Processing Industries lag behind.
The food processing industries minister said her ministry has sanctioned a total of 106 projects, of which four would come in Punjab. "Five states -- Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Telangana and Uttarakhand -- account for 70 per cent of food processing sector in the country," Badal said while addressing media to highlight the achievements of 100 days of the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre.
"Punjab is below half way mark despite the fact that it has the maximum potential (for food processing)," she further said. She said that the first Ladhowal Mega Food Park in Ludhiana in Punjab, which is now ready, could not be inaugurated.
She pointed out that the project had been stuck for one-and-half-years because of machine and power connection issues. In July this year, the union ministry had said that it would be forced to cancel the Punjab Agro Industries Corporation's proposed mega food park at Ladhowal as the project had not been made operational within the stipulated time period.
Badal said the central government can come up with schemes, but states have to implement them. "...it is up to the state governments to ensure their implementations so maximum benefit reaches people. If state government does not spread the schemes which are available and get people and help them apply, those states lag behind," she said.
Currently, 800 projects worth Rs 6,000 crore are operational across the country under the food processing ministry, she said. She further said that her ministry had operationalised 14 mega food parks.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)