Soaring tomato prices have sparked a string of jokes and one-liners on social media in Indore.
While senior BJP leader Prabhat Jha kicked up a controversy by saying that only rich eat tomatoes, social media is abuzz with jokes on how tomatoes are making people rich.
A one-liner on WhatsApp: "I have been getting several marriage proposals ever since the word got out that I am a wholesale tomato seller."
Sample another: "A groom says to would-be father-in-law: We don't want any dowry, but our only demand is that you should welcome the baraatis with tomato soup. The father-in-law faints."
Political parties in the city have also come out with innovative and hilarious ways to stage protest. On Friday, a member of the Youth Congress set up a 'shop' selling dry fruits along with tomatoes to highlight that tomato prices are out of the reach of common man.
Meanwhile, the trend of going to vegetable haats to buy tomatoes in bulk is on the rise in the city. While tomato is selling for Rs 70 per kg in the retail markets, the same are available for Rs 60 per kg and even Rs 50 per kg (depending on your bargaining skills) in the makeshift vegetable markets. The reason is that many vegetable growers sell directly at the mandis without out the middlemen.
The jokes about rising prices are not confined to social media alone. Even at the vegetable markets, one often comes across vendors and customers engaged in friendly banter.
"Customers jokingly ask me to give away one or two tomatoes free with every bulk purchase," says Dinesh Patidar, a vendor, at the makeshift Navlakha market. Jokes apart, tomato prices are unlikely to come down before October when new crop will be harvested in Madhya Pradesh.