Agriculture Ministry to host ‘Only Millets’ lunch for MPs on the occasion of ‘Year of Millets’

New Delhi: Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar will host a special ‘Bajra only’ lunch for Members of Parliament from both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha on Tuesday afternoon to mark the “Year of Millets”, a special initiative of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

PM Narendra Modi will attend this lunch in the Parliament complex on Tuesday.

Sources close to ANI said that special chefs have been brought in from Karnataka to make ragi specials like idli and ragi dosa.

Sources said rotis would be made from ragi and jowar and served to the Members of Parliament to promote the culture of eating millets. Other food items include bajra and jowar khichdi and bajra kheer.

On the initiative of PM Modi, the United Nations has declared the year 2023 as the International Year of Millets (IYOM).

Government of India notified bajra as a nutritious grain in April 2018 and bajra has also been included in the Poshan Mission Abhiyaan.

Nutritious grain component for millets is being implemented in 212 districts of 14 states under the National Mission on Food Security (NFMS).

Asia and Africa are the primary production and consumption centers of millet crops. India, Niger, Sudan and Nigeria are the primary producers of millet.

Sorghum and proso millet (common millet) are the most commonly grown millets in 112 and 35 countries, respectively. Jowar and bajra cover more than 90 percent of the area and production. The rest of the production comes from Ragi (Finger millet), Cheena (Proso millet), Foxtail millet (Kangni) and other non-separated millets.

India is a major producer of millets which include sorghum, bajra, ragi and small millets along with kangni, kutki or small millet, codon, gangora or barnyard, china and brown top. One or more species of millet crop are grown in most of the states of India. During the last 5 years, our country produced 13.71 to 18 million tonnes of millet with the highest production in 2020-21.