इंडियन आवाज़     01 Dec 2023 12:02:04      انڈین آواز

PM intervenes to check onion prices

TIA correspondent 
NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh finally intervened to check soaring onion prices. The Prime minister’s office (PMO) has  send letters to the ministries of agriculture and consumer affairs on Tuesday asking them to work together to tackle the crisis on a war footing.

Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar has also been asked to ensure that the price levels were monitored on a daily basis.

Meanwhile the government has abolished import duties on onion and banned its exports for an indefinite period.

Despite the government effort the retail prices of the onion in across the country have not shown any downward trend. It is still selling at price between Rs 70-80 a kg.

However Agriculture Secretary P.K Basu has expressed confidence that the retail prices would come down in 7 to 10 days with the expected arrival of fresh crops.

Finance Secretary Ashok Chawla told media persons that the department of revenue has brought down customs duty and countervailing duty to zero  to counter the sudden and unexpected rise in prices of onions.

The government also notified the ban on export of all varieties of onion till further orders.  The steep hike in onion prices set alarm bells ringing in the government, which initially suspended export of ban till 15th January 2011 and later banned it till further orders.

While, the wholesale prices at the country’s largest trading centre in Nashik dropped by up to 42 percent, the prices at the Azadpur Mandi in came down by up to 29 percent.
‘Onion prices will remain high for the next 2-3 weeks and the situation is likely to improve only after that,’ Food and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar had said on Tuesday.

450-tonne consignments of the Onion from Pakistan has arrived in Punjab. A few truck loads of Onion had arrived in Punjab from Lahore on Monday.

 According to an official, as many as 13 truck loads (5 to 15 tonnes per truck) of Onion had been imported from Pakistan.
Meanwhile the Centre has asked states to take stringent action against hoarders and directed the Commerce Ministry to speed up onion imports as part of measures to ease the crisis over spiraling onion prices.

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