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Food prices raise House temperature

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  22 July 2016 12:00 AM GMT

In 15 years of Congress rule, prices rose 100 to 525%, says Rihon Daimary


GUWAHATI, July 21: For the people of Assam, rising inflation is a hard everyday reality. Shelling out ever more money for food and sundry groceries is burning holes in the common man’s wallet. And the situation of high prices of essential commodities has shown little change in the 15 years of Congress rule.

The issue came to the fore in the assembly on Thursday when AGP MLA Ramendra rayan Kalita raised it and sought answer from the government, seeking details of items subject to price rise. Even prices of essential items have margilly increased in the two months’ rule of the BJP-led government in the State.

Through his reply, it was come to light that prices of most of essential commodities had increased in the 2001-2016 period when the Tarun Gogoi-led Congress was ruling the State. Prices of some commodities even skyrocketed from 100 per cent to 525 per cent in this period.

According to the report tabled in the House by Daimary, among few essential items, the maximum wholesale price of arahar dal was Rs 2,240 per quintal in 2001, which rose to Rs 14,000 per quintal in March 2016, showing a maximum price increase of 525 per cent. The maximum wholesale price of mosur dal (B) was Rs 2,131 per quintal in 2001, which rose to Rs 8,600 per quintal in March 2016, showing a maximum price increase of 303 per cent. Again the wholesale price of mosur dal (S) increased by maximum 316 per cent compared to the price in 2001.

The maximum wholesale prices of rice (fine) and rice (S/F) increased by maximum 137 per cent and 257 per cent respectively compared to their prices in 2001. The maximum wholesale price of mug dal in 2001 was Rs 3,050 per quintal, which rose to maximum Rs 10,200 in March 2016. Similary, the maximum wholesale price of sugar in 2001 was Rs 1,620 per quintal compared to maximum Rs 3,600 per quintal in March 2016.

Even the prices of some essential commodities have margilly increased since May when the new BJP government took charge at Dispur, revealed the report. The maximum retail price per kg of gram in May 2016 was Rs 80, which is currently selling at Rs 107 per kg, stated the report, the copy of which is available with The Sentinel. Similarly, retail prices of mosur dal, arahar dal, potato, onion, etc. have all increased margilly during the two months of BJP-led alliance rule.

Daimary’s reply in the House with facts and figures amply show that his predecessor in the Food and Civil Supplies department zrul Islam did little to fight for the cause of common people. Rather his frequent utterances were mostly in support of traders’ interests. As former Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi’s lack of seriousness on checking price rise in three consecutive terms at the State’s helm, the less said the better.

With the issue figuring prominently in the assembly now, the time has come for the State government to tackle the price rise problem effectively and give the common man a breather. For only that will help realise the BJP’s much vaunted promise of ‘acche din’ in the State.

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