The Kerala Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (KCMMF), which owns the popular dairy brand Milma, on Wednesday, opposed the Centre’s move to bring in private sector representation in the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB), terming it an attempt to “infringe” on the autonomy of the body.
K.S. Mani, chairman, KCMMF said the proposal to induct representatives from private dairies in the director board of NDDB will seriously harm the co-operative dairy movement in the country.
According to the latest move, the ministry has sought suggestions and comments on the proposed amendments, which also includes a proposal to appoint an additional director representing private dairy industry, to be nominated for three years.
The directors nominated to NDDB will also be ex-officio directors in the boards of subsidiary companies.
Milma has decided to express its serious concerns to the Centre against the proposed amendments as they would seriously affect the autonomy of NDDB and harm the interests of millions of dairy farmers and the dairy cooperative movement as a whole, Mani said.
It will also seek the intervention of the state government to exert pressure on the Centre to abandon the move by putting across its stand on the issue.
“Instead of inducting representatives from the private sector dairies into NDDB, the Centre should urge the private dairies to utilise the vast technical knowledge and rich domain expertise and experience of NDDB, by drafting in top officials of NDDB into their director boards,” he stated.
“Private dairies are highly resourceful when compared to the dairy cooperatives and have been progressing in the country on their own. The proposal to include representatives from private dairies in the NDDB’s director board would lead to diffusion of focus on dairy cooperatives,” said Mani.
As per an office memorandum of the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying under the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, amendments to the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) Act, 1987, have been proposed to ensure better management and monitoring of the functions of the Board.
NDDB was formed with the objective of pan-India development of the dairy cooperative sector and the success of Amul in Gujarat was so influential that the soul and spirit of the model were replicated throughout the country as Anand pattern, he said.
The White Revolution in the country and the resultant rural progress were possible only because of the trust governments had in NDDB. This was instrumental in bringing about a major socio-economic uplift of the rural poor through the dairy cooperative networks, he said.
The proposed amendments also run against the vision of A.V. Kurien, often referred to as the Milk Man of India.