Thursday, November 29, 2012

Modi’s fashion statement sparks veggie vengeance

Ahmedabad: Leaders of Janata Dal (U) and other opposition parties in Gujarat took to distributing vegetables to passersby at the Town Hall junction on Ashram Road and then took their symbolic protests right in front of the BJP office in Khanpur area. The JD(U) party workers protested against the chief minister’s recent comments on the reasons for widespread malnutrition in the state.
    “How could the chief minister claim that there are just middle class families in Gujarat and that they diet because they are ‘beauty conscious’? The state has a large population of poor from the backward communities and tribals who cannot afford vegetables. Their daily meal consists of less than 20 per cent vegetables,” says Tanmay Sheth of JD(U). “The poor also sell most of their cow milk produce to co-operatives, saving little for their family because of financial compulsions. The chief minister’s comment seemed like a crude joke completely disconnected with the prevalent realities,” Sheth added.
    Another member of the party, Jayantilal Contractor adds, “How could the CM blame vegetarianism to be a cause for malnutrition? Today, people cannot afford vegetables itself. Most people from the backward communities in Gujarat also depend on cheap meat to meet their protein needs. Before launching a nutrition mission, the chief minister should have conducted a survey on what do people in the state eat. One can always wonder where the nutrition mission will head,” says Contractor.