Just weeks after Prime Minister Modi declared that ‘India feeds the world with its grain’, the Indian government on Saturday banned all types of wheat exports with immediate effect to ensure its stocks run down.
“There is a sudden spike in global wheat prices resulting from many factors that are endangering the food security of India, neighboring countries and other vulnerable countries,” the government’s notification banning the exports reads.
The ministry said only export shipments for which letters of credit were issued on or before yesterday’s notification would be permitted.
Moreover, according to the notification issued by the General Directorate of Foreign Trade (DGFT), the government will allow exports upon request from other countries.
The notification was dated May 13, 2022.
As shipments from the Black Sea region plummeted after Russia invaded Ukraine in late February, global consumers turned to India, the world’s second largest wheat producer after China, for s to supply.
The decision to limit wheat exports comes after a massive crop loss in March due to a heat wave. Inflation, which reached 7.79% in April, is also putting pressure on the government.
Prime Minister’s comment a month ago
Last month, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that during his talks with US President Joe Biden last month, he had offered to supply India’s food stock to the world if the World Trade Organization (WTO) agreed. permission.
Food stocks in different parts of the world are dwindling due to war (in Ukraine), Modi said at an event in Gujarat.
Today the world is facing an uncertain situation because no one gets what they want. Gasoline, kerosene and fertilizers are hard to come by because all the doors are closing. Everyone wants to secure their stocks after the start of this war (Russia-Ukraine), Modi said.
The world faces a new problem now; the food supply of the world is running out, I was talking to the American president, and he also raised this issue. I suggested that if the WTO gives clearance, India is ready to provide food stocks to the world from tomorrow, Modi said.
We already have enough food for our people, but our farmers seem to have made arrangements to feed the world. However, we have to work according to the laws of the world, so I don’t know when the WTO will give permission and we can provide food to the world, Modi added.
Twitter springs into action
Shortly after India banned the export of wheat on Saturday, Twitter users were quick to remind the government of comments Prime Minister Modi made last month. People also recalled similar actions regarding vaccine and Remdesivir exports last year.
TMC spokesperson Saket Gokhale, taking to Twitter, said: “On April 13, Modi said ‘India can feed the world if WTO allows’. Today India banned wheat exports. Same with vaccines – Modi exported them when India faced a shortage. And then he banned exports. He would do anything for his personal PR. And now , no one takes it seriously.
National Congress Media Coordinator Vinay Kumar Dokania also criticized the government’s decision. “#remdesivir- Modi exported them before analyzing Indian needs. Vaccines-Modi exported in bulk leaving a huge shortage in India which caused the 2nd wave of Covid. Wheat-Modi made huge demands on the WTO to export wheat, later had to ban exports citing great shortage Ye PM hai Ya PR Manager?
Another user named Kumar San wrote, “Vishwaguru traveling overseas! ‘We are going to feed the world’!