India has allowed exports of a small quantity of 60 tonnes of pulses to Maldives on diplomatic grounds, even though there is a ban on the shipment of the commodity.
"The prohibition on export of pulses shall not be applicable to export of 60 tonnes of pulses to Maldives," the Directorate General of Foreign Trade under the Commerce Ministry said in a notification.
India, a net importer of pulses, had banned exports of the commodity in June 2006 to augment domestic supply and check prices.
The country imports about four million tonnes of pulses to meet its domestic demand.
Pulses production is estimated at nearly 15 million tonne in 2009-10 season. The domestic demand of pulses is pegged at 18-19 million tonnes. The gap between demand and supply is
being met through imports.
Besides pulses, India is exporting rice and wheat to its neighbour and several African countries under the diplomatic route and food for aid programme.