Written by Ishika Yadav | Edited by Sohini Goswami
Days after Turkey rejected a consignment of wheat from India citing phytosanitary concerns, Union minister Piyush Goyal said an investigation revealed that the exports belonged to Kolkata-based conglomerate ITC. Goyal said the wheat consignment was actually bought by the Netherlands, and the fact that it eventually was given to Turkey came as a surprise to the company as well. He added that he had full faith in the quality of the export by “such a big company”.
“On investigation, it was found that these exports belonged to ITC Limited. You all know how big a company ITC Limited is,” the Union minister of consumer affairs, food and public distribution was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
“You will be surprised to know that these goods were bought by the Netherlands from ITC. ITC was not aware that it was for Turkey,” he added. “They themselves found out about it via a news report. This consignment was thoroughly checked according to the requirements of the Netherlands,” Goyal added.
“ITC had exported wheat according to the destination of the Netherlands. When and how the consignment was diverted; and who did it – ITC has no information about it. I have full faith that the wheat of India is of good quality,” the minister said.
On Tuesday, the Turkish authorities denied permission to an Indian wheat consignment over phytosanitary concerns, prompting a ship to initiate its return journey on May 29. Reports said Turkey rejected the shipment after Indian Rubella disease was detected in the consignment.
While India is not among the biggest exporters of wheat, the global food shortage induced by the Ukraine war has forced several countries to rely on imports, and opened doors for India to export wheat. The war has also caused global prices to arise above domestic floor prices.
(With agency inputs)
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