Steeping prices of essentials hits people in Kashmir

Steeping prices of essentials hits people in Kashmir
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Srinagar, Nov 23: With authorities in an apparent slumber, the prices of almost all essentials, particularly vegetables and eggs, have witnessed a sharp increase while frequent and unscheduled power cuts have returned to haunt the people in Kashmir valley.
People alleged that rise in prices and power crises is a déjà vu all over again, which happens every year after “Durbar” seat of the government shifts to winter capital, Jammu.
The prices of local vegetables, including Hak (green leaves), Kadam, carrot, radish and turnip has also witnessed a sharp increase.
Kashmir valley is depending on imports of almost everything from different parts of the country, particularly northern states. However, the divisional administration has failed to fix the prices of essentials, including vegetables and other daily consumable items.
A kg of peas costs between Rs 40 to Rs 50 depending upon the middle class and posh colonies, while Tomato was being sold at the rate of Rs 50 per kg. Bean Rs 60 per kg, Onion Rs 40 to Rs 50, Cauliflower Rs 30 to Rs 40, Spinach Rs 30 to Rs 40, Potato Rs 30, Bottle Gourd Rs 30 to Rs 35, Cabbage Rs 20 to Rs 30 and Radish (local) Rs 30 and Shimla Raddish Rs 40.
The local Hak was being sold at Rs 40 to Rs 50 while the “Nadroo” Rs 250 to Rs 350. There was no fixed rate for chicken which was being sold at Rs 120 to Rs 135 per while meat Rs 400 to Rs 420 per kg. Crores of rupees are being spent on import of chicken and meat into Kashmir valley from Rajasthan, Delhi and other parts of the country.
The prices of eggs have also gone significantly. A box of eggs, which used to cost Rs 800 two weeks back, is being sold at Rs 1500 to Rs 1600.
Meanwhile, there is absolutely no fixed rate for confectionary items. A simple cake which was costing Rs 25 per piece few years ago now cost Rs 50. Similarly cost of other bakery items has also witnessed many fold increase during the past one year. Cost of bread, biscuits and other items has also increased without any proper approval from the government.
A simple bread (Kashmiri roti) which was costing Rs 2.50 per piece now costs Rs 5 with same weight and size. Infact the weight of roti has witnessed decrease and breadmakers have now stopped making Rs 2.50 roti and lowest roti costs Rs 5.
The local fish costs Rs 250 to Rs 400 per kg depend upon size and quality while fish from other parts of the country was available in the market. The cost of per kg milk has also been increased by Rs 4 to Rs 5 by local suppliers, coming from outskirts and other rural areas in Srinagar. Price of other items, including Kashmiri tea, pulses and chili has also witnessed increase.
People alleged that the administration has totally failed to control the prices of essentials, particularly vegetables and other daily consumable items. However, they said that at some places officials are conducting raids and imposing fine on few small shopkeepers to register their presence in the media when actually nothing is changing on the ground.
There is also no fixed rate for shoes, particularly being used during winter when there is snow. Similarly coal being used in the “Kangri” has also no fixed rate. A quintal of local coal costs Rs 700 to Rs 900 while imported from different parts of the country Rs 1700 Rs 2000.
Meanwhile, an official spokesman said this evening that Department of Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs (FCS&CA) has recovered a fine of Rs 8, 96,950, while as it penalized 1724 defaulters during this year, so far, during the market checking drive conducted in the Kashmir Division.
He said according to a progress report of the Department’s Enforcement Wing, around 5455 establishments were inspected from January 2017 to October 2017. The highest number of fine realized was Rs 1, 43,500 in June during which 690 food business units were inspected for violating various provisions of Food Safety & Standards Act.
As many as 79 defaulters have been penalized and Rs 31, 550 was recovered as fine from them during the current month so far, the report said.