Bihar’s way to save grains — eat rats | patna | Hindustan Times
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Bihar’s way to save grains — eat rats

Authorities are asking rich and poor alike to switch to eating rats in a bid to reduce the dependence on rice. They even plan to offer rats on restaurant menus.

patna Updated: Aug 18, 2008 23:40 IST

The Bihar government seems to have done a Marie Antoinette.

The Queen of France, wife of Louis XVI said about her starving population “if they don’t have bread, give them cake.”

That was 18th century France. Today’s Bihar government is encouraging people to eat rats in an effort to battle soaring food prices and save grain stocks.

Authorities are asking rich and poor alike to switch to eating rats in a bid to reduce the dependence on rice. They even plan to offer rats on restaurant menus.

“Eating rats will serve twin purposes — it will save grains from being eaten away by rats and will simultaneously increase our grain stock,” said Vijay Prakash, an official from the state’s welfare department.

Officials say almost 50 per cent of India’s foodgrain stocks are eaten by rodents in fields or warehouses.

Jitan Ram Manjhi, Bihar’s Caste and Tribal Welfare Minister, said rat meat was a healthy alternative. “We are very serious about implementing this project since the food crisis is turning serious day by day,” said Manjhi, who has eaten rats.