RUKUM, May 9: Despite the government's claim of having provided subsidized rice to food deficit areas in Dolpa, the locals are complaining of receiving barely anything as per the government's declaration. The rice originally intended to reach Dolpa is believed to have disappeared in Rukum itself. And the reason is a black-market run by the assigned suppliers and employees of Nepal Food Corporation (NFC).
The rice packaged and sent to a depot at Sarmi of Dolpa's Mudkechula Rural Municipality-7 by the NFC is reported to have been sold at Aathbiskot Municipality-6, Triveni of Rukum (West). The supplier is accused of selling 1000 quintals of rice. The rice is transferred from NFC to the intended depot through a supplier assigned on a yearly basis. This year, the responsible supplier is Salyan's BC Traders.
The locals of Triveni have exposed the supplier's black-marketing. Local Ram Krishna Sarki, confirmed to have bought rice at Rs 59 per kilogram from the supplier, which was much more cheaper than the locally available rice. Sarki also mentioned Janak Budha's name, a representative of the supplier, who is believed to have sold off of the 1000 quintal rice.
Not a single kilogram of rice is said to have reached the Sarmi depot in the ongoing fiscal year. The food deficit area is dependent upon rice imported from other areas. However, the ill-intention of the supplier seems to have troubled the locals of this region severely.
The supplier however has created papers in collaboration with employees of NFC to prove the accusations as baseless. BC Traders is believed to have connections with the members of the NFC, to clean up the mess they have created. The locals of Mudkechula will however have to face deficit of rice till the government makes some other provision.
The employees of the Sarmi depot are also suspected of being involved in the misdeed. The Dolpa Food Corporation (DFC) has informed about selling the rice in the presence of Mukunda Paneru, an employee at the depot, although the locals have said they have not purchased any rice at subsidized rate.
“We are still investigating on this issue,” stated Dolpa Food Corporation chief Kamal Raj Pandey.
Ward chiefs of ward number 1, 2 and 3 of Mudkechula are also suspected of being involved in the incident.