On the first day of the lockdown, the prices of all kinds of daily commodities have gone up in the retail market of the capital on the pretext of supply crisis. The prices of rice, pulses, flour, vegetables, fruits and spices have gone up the most during this period. But there is no shortage of products compared to the demand in the market. This information was obtained by visiting different markets of the capital.
On the first day (Monday) of the seven-day lockdown announced by the government to prevent coronavirus infection, the retail price of all types of rice has gone up by Rs 2-3 per kg. Prices of different types of pulses have gone up by Rs 5-10 per kg, vegetables by a maximum of Rs 10 per kg and raw chillies by Rs 50 per kg in a day. The price of cardamom has gone up by Rs 500 per kg, while the prices of several spices including onion, ginger and garlic have also gone up.
However, there was no food crisis in the capital market; Rather, stocks of all types of products have been found to be more in demand than buyers. There is also adequate supply in the wholesale markets of the capital.
Market analysts say that the month of Ramadan is ahead, so if they do not act quickly now, traders will raise prices further on the pretext of a lockdown. If the price goes up, it does not go down easily. As a result, the rising prices may continue throughout the month of Ramadan.
Meanwhile, the information about the increase in the prices of these products has also been mentioned in the daily commodity price list of the government body Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB). They say that the price of long eggplant has been increased by Tk 10, imported ginger by Tk 20, dried chilli by Tk 20, imported and domestic garlic by Tk 10, mung bean by Tk 10 and lentil by Tk 5 per kg. The price of fish has also increased. Rui fish of 220 rupees has been sold for 250 rupees.
Meanwhile, during the lockdown announced by the government in Corona situation, no restrictions were imposed on the production, supply, wholesale and retail sale of daily commodities.
The Department of Agriculture Marketing has sought the cooperation of the Ministry of Roads, Shipping and Railways to take necessary steps to keep the supply system normal as the prices of goods increased in the market on Monday. In this regard, a separate letter has been issued to the concerned ministries from this government institution. Bangladesh Railways has been requested to take initiative to strengthen the freight transport system from different districts by introducing freezing wagons (air-conditioned bogies for transporting goods).
A senior official of the Department of Agricultural Marketing, who did not want to be named, said the supply chain broke down last year during the general holiday due to various reasons. That situation was created because it was too late to make any decision at that time. But this time I have been working on behalf of the department from the very beginning. Hopefully, the supply of agricultural products and other products in the market will remain normal.
According to department sources, a letter has been sent to DCs and UNOs across the country on Sunday. Besides, supervision has been requested to ensure that there is no problem in marketing and inter-district transport of the produce of the farmers. At the same time, in order to ensure smooth flow of roads and waterways, cooperation has been sought from the concerned departments through letters. Banners will be put up on the cargo vehicles so that the vehicles carrying agricultural products do not face any obstruction during the lockdown.
Meanwhile, BRTC has also taken initiative to transport goods from different districts at half fare. Special trains will be provided for the transportation of goods, only extra wagons will be added to the non-passenger trains. The decision will be implemented in a day or two.
Turning to the retail market of the capital and talking to the sellers, it has been learned that Dhandash, Patol and Barbati are being sold at Rs 60-70 per kg on Monday, which was seen to be sold at Rs 50-60 on Sunday. It was sold at Tk 30 per kg, which was sold at Tk 25 on Sunday. 36-38 rupees per kg is being sold. However, in Nayabazar, this tomato was seen to be sold at Tk 40, which was sold at Tk 35 on Sunday. Besides, each piece of pumpkin has been sold at Rs 60-65, which is sold on Sunday at Rs 50-55. Kawran market vegetable seller in the capital. Alauddin told Jugantar that the truck carrying vegetables could not reach the market on time due to the lockdown. Apart from that, the number of trucks has also come down. That is why there is a crisis of vegetables. So the price goes up.
When asked, Golam Rahman, president of the Consumers Association of Bangladesh (CAB), told Jugantar, “I applaud the government for imposing restrictions on corona control.” However, transportation of goods is exempt from these restrictions. Therefore, it is unreasonable to increase the price of goods in just a few hours due to the product crisis. In this regard, the government has to do market monitoring in a coordinated manner. Otherwise, traders will take consumers hostage on the pretext of lockdown.
On the other hand, it has been noticed in the daily market price list of the government agency TCB, on this day, the maximum price of Miniket rice has increased by Tk 2 per kg to Tk 6. Pajama rice has been increased by Tk 4 per kg to Tk 60. Apart from this, gold variety rice has been sold at Tk 52, which has been sold at Tk 50 earlier. Khalik Rice Agency owner and retailer of the capital’s Malibagh raw market. Didar Hossain told Jugantar that the prices of all types of rice were increasing in the market. Consumers stumbled upon the news of the lockdown and bought rice. However, the supply will be normal in a day or two – the price will also go down.
According to TCB’s commodity price list, on Monday, raw chillies cost Rs 80-100 per kg, brinjal Rs 80 per kg, potatoes Rs 25 per kg, cardamom Rs 3,500 per kg, imported ginger Rs 140 per kg, dried chillies Rs 300 per kg, imported garlic Rs 130 per kg and domestic onion Rs 45 per kg. -50 rupees, mug pulses 140 rupees, medium grain lentil pulses 90 rupees and large grain lentil pulses in Turkey at 60 rupees per kg.
Manzoor Mohammad Shahriar, deputy director of the National Consumer Rights Protection Department, wanted to know
He said that the picture of price rise in one day is completely unreasonable. There are multiple teams on the market from the department. The reason for the increase in prices is being investigated. If it is possible to identify the culprits, the culprits will be brought under the law.