In a video message, Siddaramaiah claimed that he visited three Indira canteens in the city and noticed that the usual crowd was missing from there.
File photo of an Indira Canteen in Bengaluru.
Bengaluru: Senior Congress leader K Siddaramaiah on Tuesday alleged that the usual crowd from the Indira Canteens here has been missing ever since the BJP-government in Karnataka decided to make people pay for food.
In a video message shared with the media, Siddaramaiah claimed that he visited three Indira canteens in RT Nagar in the city in the afternoon and noticed that the usual crowd was missing from there.
“When food was distributed free of cost, people used to throng the canteen but now people are not seen. The reason is people don’t have money,” Siddaramaiah rued.
“Earlier, 700 plates of food were sold a day, but now only around 150,” he quoted the canteen staff as saying.
The Congress leader recalled that he recently wrote a letter to the state government to provide free food till the situation normalises.
The Indira canteens were started by the then Congress government in the state in 2017 with an aim to offer highly subsidised food to the urban poor.
After the coronavirus lockdown was imposed, the Yediyurappa-led government served free food at these counters while food parcels were distributed at these places.
However, the government changed its policy and decided to collect a nominal amount for the food, which came under criticism from various quarters.
The government said the decision was taken in the wake of complaints regarding misuse of the facility.
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