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Dehradun, November 20
Despite a significant dip in the wholesale prices of vegetables on Wednesday, these continued to remain evasive from the common man.
Among the vegetables, tomatoes and onions ruled the roaster as they continue to be sold at a whopping Rs 60-70 and Rs 40-50 per kg in the retail market. While the wholesale price of tomato stands at Rs 20-30 per kg, the retailers are purchasing onions at Rs 20-35 per kg from the wholesalers.
A visit to the Niranjanpur-based vegetable and fruit market revealed how the retailers are minting money under the garb of inflation. While accepting that the prices of the veggies have indeed taken a jump in the past few days, the wholesalers vehemently denied that the same was being sold at higher prices to the retailers.
Speaking to The Tribune, Jitender Anand, wholesaler for onion and potatoes, said that the day saw a slight dip in the prices of the products. “No doubt that the wholesale prices of onions and potatoes have dipped but the retailers continue to sell them at higher prices after purchasing from us.
The onions coming from Rajasthan are not of good quality and have very low water content. They are the cheapest and are being sold from Rs 25 per kg onwards at the wholesale price. On the other hand, the onions coming from Nashik are of the A grade quality and are being sold at Rs 30-35 per kg,” he added.
On being asked about the reason behind the upsurge in the prices of the vegetables, Ritesh Rana, another wholesaler, said that it was due to the extended monsoons and the cyclone that hit the coastal belts in South India. “This year the rains continued till mid October, as a result the crop sown earlier was completely destroyed. These had to be
re-sown, which in turn lowered the production as compared to the demand. Cyclone Phailin had completely destroyed the onion produce in the southern belt. Farmers, too, are demanding a high price in return for their produce that has greatly impacted the price and led to inflation. We are hoping that the prices would be normalised by the second week of December once the new produce hits the market,” he added.
Meanwhile, the situation of the retail sale was no different in the mandi as retailers at the Niranjanpur wholesale vegetable and fruit market continued to sell the vegetables at high prices as available outside the mandis. With the wholesalers refusing to sell the produce for smaller quantity, the hopes of those visiting the mandi for cheaper veggies were dashed. “The wholesalers refuse to provide few kg of onions and potatoes and the retailers are charging almost a similar amount in the market. We have come so far but in vain,” said Reena, a housewife.


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