New Delhi: The government on Wednesday decided to allocate 25,800 tonnes of subsidised foodgrains for pilgrims attending Maha Kumbh Mela in Allahabad next month.

Kumbh Mela, a globally renowned religious festival, will be celebrated in Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, from next month. The festival is held after a gap of 12 years and about seven lakhs pilgrims and saints are expected to participate.
"The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on Wednesday approved the allocation of Rs 16200 tonnes of wheat and 9,600 tonnes of rice for Kumbh Mela 2012-13 at below poverty line (BPL) prices," Finance Minister P Chidambaram told reporters.

The allocation of above quantity of foodgrains at BPL prices will involve a subsidy of Rs 40.6 crore, he added. At present, BPL families get rice at Rs 5.65 per kg and wheat at Rs 4.15 per kg through ration shops.

The CCEA took a decision on foodgrains allocation, following a request by the Uttar Pradesh government in its letter dated July 30, an official statement said. Allocation of cheaper foodgrains will ensure availability of wheat and rice to tourists, devotees, religious and non-government organisations(NGOs), security forces and officials involved in connection with organisation of mela, it added.


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