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When tomato scored 100...

india Updated: Aug 12, 2006 00:02 IST

TOMATOES TUMBLED down to Rs 40-45 a kg after hitting a century on the Rakhi day. But, still they are out of the middleclass kitchen’s reach.

What to eat? Potatoes are selling at Rs 10-15 per kg, Parval Rs 30-40 a kg, Brinjal Rs 16-20, ladyfinger Rs 10-12 for a kg. And the apple has refused to be a daily take by racing at Rs 90 a kg.

Pineapple is at Rs 25-35 per kgl, bitter gourd (karela) Rs  20-25, lobhia Rs 15 –20, taroi Rs 15 –20, wheat flour Rs 13 - 20 kg, rice Rs 15 -20 a kg , dal moong ranging between Rs 44-56. Dal Urad between Rs 49-55 per kg.

The price hike has left the common man cut down purchases.

The salaried class is feeling the pinch more than others, as most of them belong to the middle class. The big question is how to survive?

All these commodities have observed the increase of 20 per cent or above in the last week. 

“One can only smash his head on the walls if he tries to understand the reason behind the hike in the prices of tomato which was selling at Rs 14 per kg two days before Rakshbandhan,” says Rashid, a wholesale vegetable dealer at Dubagga Mandi.

He says more than wheat, sugar and pulses, it is the rising prices of vegetables that have hit the common man the hardest.

“For the past two weeks, the prices of vegetables are affecting our budget. Looking at the high tomato price, we have curbed its use,” says a housewife Ramanjeet Kaur of Vishwas Khand.

“Tomato has become like a dream for middle class people like us. Earlier we used to consume over 3 kg of tomatoes every week. But for the last two weeks we are managing with just half kg,” She adds.

The wholesellers are also surprised by the spurt in the prices. Traders  say that the price rise could be attributed to the festive season, lesser production, the hike in fuel prices, poor transportation facilities from the villages and internet betting was also responsible for the rising prices.

“Prices usually go up during the festive season but they just don’t rocket like this. We can understand the low production coupled with high transportation. But, that increase is still surprising,” says trader leader Sandeep Bansal.

“How would we survive in the limited salary.

The government can’t check the prices, it should increase the salaries accordingly.

We are not going to eat computers whose prices are coming down?” says housewife Najma .

Even the small time vegetable vendors and retailers have begun to feel the pinch.

“I have observed over the last few days that most customers have been cutting down on purchases. They are not even buying bread and milk as regularly as before,” says a grocery shop owner in Aminabad.

“The sale of fruits and non-essential items like almond, pistachio, cashew nuts has gone down considerably,” he adds. 

“Well I am not purchasing fruits as regularly for my children as I have to compensate for the high prices of greens from somewhere,” says Ashok Sindhuja of Singar Nagar.