Vegetable, fruit stalls to check prices

March 31st, 2008 - 9:45 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, March 31 (IANS) The Delhi government Monday said it was planning to put up its vegetable and fruit stalls to tackle rising prices in the city. The government will also stop the export of tomatoes whose wholesale price has gone up to Rs. 11.25 per kg.

Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit reviewed the situation in a meeting with Delhi Agricultural Marketing Board (DAMB) chairman Brahm Yadav and other senior government officials.

“If needed, the government will put up vegetable and fruit stalls. There is a slight increase in the wholesale price of bitter gourd,” Yadav told IANS.

“There is no increase in the wholesale price of vegetables and fruits except for tomatoes because of low arrival. We have suggested the government to stop exporting tomatoes for a few days,” Yadav added.

He said the government would look into the factors responsible for high prices of all vegetables and fruits. “The increased transport cost can be a reason,” Yadav said.

Dikshit, who turned 70 Monday and cut cakes weighing 70 and 51 kg at her residence, and the Old Secretariat respectively, had sought a detailed report from the DAMB on the price situation.

The Dikshit-led Congress government is under fierce attack from the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) members for allegedly failing to check rising prices.

BJP legislator Vijay Jolly last week even raised the issue in the assembly under as a matter of urgent public importance. He drew the government’s attention to a price increase of up to 40 percent of green vegetables, and 100 percent in the case of fruits.

“Even papaya is being sold at Rs.35 to Rs.40 per kg now against Rs.20,” Jolly had stated.

“The Congress government is least bothered about the plight of the common people. It has turned out to be so insensitive,” BJP’s Delhi unit chief Harshvardhan told IANS.

The city’s Finance Minister A.K. Walia painted a rosy picture of the price situation in his budget speech March, saying: “The price trend of essential items in Delhi has been kept under constant watch.”

“The rate of inflation as per the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for industrial workers in Delhi during 2007 was only 4.9 percent as compared to 9.1, 6.3, and 5.1 in Kolkata, Mumbai, and Chennai respectively,” Walia had said.

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