Centre trying its best to rescue Indians trapped in Iraq: Harsimrat Badal

  • Tarsem Singh Deogan, Hindustan Times, LUDHIANA
  • Updated: Jul 05, 2014 22:36 IST

Union minister for food processing industries Harsimrat Kaur Badal on Saturday said there was no government in Iraq and because of the lack of system in the war-torn country; it was getting difficult to rescue the stranded Indians from there.

“The major problem is who to contact in Iraq. But despite the problems, the government is trying its best to rescue the stranded Indians from there,” said Harsimrat, adding that when the Iraq crisis was at initial stage, the central government, through its Indian embassy, had issued an advisory for the Indians living there to come back.

Harsimrat, who was on her first visit to Ludhiana after being sworn in as the union minster, said she would apprise the central government of the issues raised by the members of food processing industries whom she met in a meeting here.

On foreign direct Investment (FDI) in food processing industries, the union minister said, she would take care that no small scale or medium scale industry get affected due to FDI.

She said, as per a survey, food worth Rs. 44,000 crore was wasted in India every year due to lack of processing and storage. “The target of the NDA government is to convert that national waste into national asset,” said Harsimrat, adding that Punjab was a viable location for setting up of food processing industry.

She said she has been preparing a food map of India to know which state was rich in which food.

“According to the map, a particular industry will be set up in that particular state,” she added.

The union minister said mini food parks would also be established in Punjab, which would beneficial for the farmers as well.

Harsimrat also visited Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) and Central Institute of Post-Harvest Engineering and Technology (CIPHET) to review the projects about food processing.

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