Reyaz Rashid

Consumers aghast over skyrocketing vegetables prices  

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CAPD, civil administration silent, people suffer

Baramulla: Already distressed by the hike in price of essential commodities including cooking oil, the skyrocketing prices of vegetables has caused more dismay among the consumers who allege the concerned department of being strangely mum over the issue leaving masses the suffer at the hands of vegetable sellers.

Alleging that the prices of tomato and pears had shot up to Rs 100/Kg in Kashmir valley, consumers allege that nearly all vegetable sellers were operating without an official rate list. “It is strange that there is no rate displayed in any shop, I wonder if the department has even issued one and as a result of this we are suffering at the hands of the vegetable sellers,” alleged a distressed consumer in North Kashmir’s Baramullla town.

As if financial distress induced by Covid-19 was not enough the consumers are helplessly watching the spiraling price of essential commodities including vegetables. Throwing the government issued price list to dogs; vegetable vendors are ragging the consumers by selling the vegetables on exorbitant prices.

“Rates have become the choice of sellers as they do not stick to a rate list issued by the concerned Department and thereby imposing the prices of their own choice. They don’t adhere to a rate list and sell fruits and vegetables on high rates. We have no option but to buy the vegetables at exorbitant rate. Tomato and Pears are sold Rs 100 per kg what will a poor family do,” asked Mohmmad Haris, a customer.

Nisar Ahmad, another consumer, said that “what gives more jitters to the vegetable buyers is that these high prices are not being checked and reduced by the CAPD which is supposed to maintain affordable prices for people. Prices of most of the commonly used vegetables including tomato, beans, drumstick, lady finger etc are skyrocketing by each passing day.

“With Tomato and pears being sold at Rs 100 per kg, Haak and Green chillies at Rs 70, French beans for 90 and fresh beans for Rs 100 per Kilogram, what should one do? This is the beginning of the winter here and the prices are already going up, what should we expect in the days to come,” questioned Abdul Ahad , a local resident of Baramulla town.

Not only vegetables, rates of fruits are also soaring and nobody seems to bother about it and to put a check on the skyrocketing rates which are a sheer violation of the CAPD rate list. “We have to buy bananas for Rs 100 a dozen and grapes are sold at Rs 400 kg which is astonishing. How can poor people like me dream of buying fruit or vegetables these days,” said Mohammad Ayoub, a local labourer.

“We are a family of five members and have to spend at least Rs 150 a day for vegetables alone. At this rate if we have to dedicate Rs 3,000 to Rs 4,000 for vegetables alone per month, how we can we take care of other expenses,” asked Dr. Amjid.

When contacted, Assistant Director Food, Baramulla ,Sheikh Tariq Ahmad said, “our teams are conducting market checking of vendors and vegetable dealers. We have fined many violators and whosoever will be found selling commodities at higher rates will be fined and booked under law.”

He added that people must register complaints with the department so that action is taken against the offenders of official rate lists issued by the department.

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