Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Oct 25:
At least 170 bags weighing 50 quintals of pulses were found from a house in Odisha capital late on Saturday night.
The goods containing 80 bags of arhar and 90 packets of masoor dal were unearthed from the house of a retired school teacher in Dumduma area in the city.
Acting on reliable information, the Khandarigi police raided the house on plot no-273 under Dumduma Phase-I and found pulses of around 50 quintals stashed in the house.
“My son has purchased these pulses for retailing purpose. He has brought these yesterday. My son is unemployed and he intends to do business. We have a valid invoice and it was not intended for black marketing,” the retired school teacher claimed today.
The locals, however, alleged that at a time when black marketing of pulses are rampant, the discovery of pulses stocked in a house raises suspicion.
On the other hand, the state government raided seven places for illegal hoarding of pulses. In the crackdown, 88 tonnes of pulses were seized.
The raids were carried out by Food Supplies & Consumer Welfare Department at Devi Bhandar and MD Faruk godowns in Jagatpur industrial area in Cuttack for piling stocks beyond permissible limits.
The state government had directed the district collectors to verify stock of pulses in the godowns.
The action in the state was following directions from the Centre to act against hoarders of pulses, particularly arhar and urad dal, in the backdrop of the unprecedented rise in their prices. Wholesale traders across the country have attributed the increase to illegal hoarding.
Earlier on Thursday, the department had raided pulses godown in Mancheswar area. Large number of poly sacks packed with pulses was found stacked inside the godown, an equal quantity was found lying on the floor of the godown. However, the owner of the godown stressed that the stock was certainly much below the statutory limit of 750 quintals.
During the nationwide crackdown on illegal hoarders, nearly 75,000 tonnes of pulses have been seized in raids across 13 states. At least 6,077 raids have been conducted after the amendment in the Central Order under Essential Commodities Act.
Notably, about 7,033 tonnes of lentils were seized from Maharashtra, 5,487 tonnes from Karnataka, 2,051 tonnes from Rajasthan and 764 tonnes from Haryana.