NEW DELHI: Noting that the government has no role in the milk business, the GCMMF, which owns the Amul brand, today said the Centre should hand over control of Mother Dairy to cooperatives.
Mother Dairy, a wholly owned company of the Centre's National Dairy Development Board(NDDB), manufactures and sells milk in Delhi, Mumbai, Saurashtra and Hyderabad.
"The government should not be in the business of milk. When the government is disinvesting in other sectors, why can't they look at Mother Dairy," Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation Chairman Vipul Choudhary told reporters.
"When Mother Dairy was formed, consumers needed good quality milk and farmers wanted a market. It had relevance at that time...Of course, the government should disinvest in Mother Dairy to dairy cooperatives like us."
Mother Dairy was one of several dairies funded and set up by the NDDB under 'Operation Flood' programme in 1974 to ensure milk supply in the country. Mother Dairy in Delhi was managed by NDDB, while in Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata, it was under the respective state cooperative dairy federations.
Like other dairies funded under the programme, Choudhary said: "Mother Dairy has also repaid the entire loan amount with interest to NDDB. Who has paid this loan?"
"It was paid from the profits generated from milk supplied by those dairy cooperatives in and around Delhi and GCMMF. So, Mother Dairy Delhi does not belong to NDDB any more," he said.
Mother Dairy officials were not reachable for comment. As per the law, the NDDB's mandate is to replicate the 'Amul model' of dairy cooperatives in the country.
At present, Mother Dairy sells about 3.2 million litres of milk daily in four cities. Of this, it sells 2.5 million litres of milk daily in Delhi.