RANCHI: Even though Jharkhand has witnessed more than a dozen starvation deaths during the last two years, Food and Civil Supplies Minister Saryu Roy on Friday rubbished media reports in this regard, calling them rumours framed by some media houses to target the state government. Talking to media persons while speaking of the achievements of his department, the minister said his department was not responsible for starvation deaths in the state.
“Starvation deaths are not directly related to our department. It is primarily a matter of the health department. Our responsibility is to provide ration to those who have ration cards and we are not responsible for those who do not have it,” said the minister. As far as starvation deaths are concerned, the department has made a protocol through a panel which included activists related to the Right to Food campaign, he added.
“Jharkhand is the first state which has made a protocol to define starvation deaths so that confusion in cases of alleged cases of starvation death can be removed,” said Roy. Grain banks have been created at the block level to deal with any emergency situation, he added.
In a suspected case of starvation death this week, a man in his 40s died on Wednesday after allegedly starving for over 10 days at Dodagadha village in Chatra district. The wife of the deceased claimed that they did not have any foodgrains in their house for the last four to five months and were begging for food in the village.