Reported by Chinmaya Dehury
Bhubaneswar, April 21:
The prices of potato and onion in Odisha which have shot up by 60% over the last two weeks,have hit the people where it pains the most- the shrinking purse.
The state government has, at long last, woken up from its poll-time slumber and instructed the district Collectors to take immediate steps to check the rising trend in the price of potato and keep up a close watch on onion price as well.
“I am to say that the price of potato is now showing rising trend in the market since last week and the present market rate is Rs 15-16 per kg in different markets of the state. This upward trend in source markets at West Bengal is being reflected in the domestic market of our state. Taking the advantage of the situation, the unscrupulous traders may resort to unfair trade practices like hoarding & profiteering,” said Food, Supplies and Consumer Welfare secretary Madhu Sudan Padhy in a letter to all the district Collectors directing them to keep a close watch on unscrupulous hoardings by the retailers.
Realising that the price rise would create inconvenience to the common people and breed discontent among them, he has requested the collectors to check the availability position of potato and onion in the market and monitor it regularly by tracking the retail price with reference to the wholesale price for at least the next 15 days.
However, the government hopes the price would come down after supply of potato from the cold storages of West Bengal begins in the first week of May.
“Similarly, there is a need to keep a watch over prices of onion. Although the price of onion has almost remained steady in the market since last month, its price may rise in future due to less production this year in the source Mandis like Nasik, Pune, Lasalgan etc. in Maharastra,” said Padhi.