Onion will continue to make a dent in your home budget for at least a few more days.
While the prices of onion came down marginally - from Rs 55 to Rs 50 a kilo - at the four wholesale vegetable markets on Wednesday, the retail prices continued to remain high at Rs 70-Rs 80 a kilo in different parts of the city.
Heavy rain in July had damaged the harvest in Maharashtra from where Delhi gets its majority of the stock of onion. It also gets the commodity from Madhya Pradesh. Wholesalers said not only the farmers increased the prices but also a large chunk of the stock was diverted to Andhra Pradesh, Kerela and Tamil Nadu. This resulted in an increase in prices in Delhi and NCR.
The wholesalers said the supply had improved in the last couple of days but only marginally. The prices may increase again, they said.
“There are more trucks coming in than last week and there is a marginal drop of Rs 3-5 per kilo in the wholesale prices. But we fear that the supply may again drop and the prices may rise,” said Ankit Budhiraja, a vegetable wholesale at Azadpur.
The traders said fresh stock was now being sent to Delhi. “The retail prices will come down soon,” said Manoj Kumar Yadav, another wholesaler.
According to Rajinder Kumar Sharma, chairman, Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee Azadpur, there was about 2,200 tonnes of onion (fresh arrival and the stock combined) available in market against the consumption of 1,000-1,100 tonnes. The daily supply had increased from 800-1,000 tonnes to about 1,400 tonnes.
“The worst is over. Even if the supply goes down marginally, the prices will remain stable. Prices will be back to normal in the next 20-25 days,” Sharma said.
The Delhi government, in a statement, said that Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit had written to Union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar to curtail the export of onion. In a joint statement, development minister Rajkumar Chauhan and food and supplies minister Haroon Yusuf said the government was keeping a close watch on onion prices.
Yusuf said government would take strict action against hoarders and black marketeers. “The government is also going to request other states including Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan to take similar action against hoarders,” he said.