Vegetables are burning a hole in the pockets of the common man in the state capital. Prices are on fire after crop damage in various parts of the country due to heavy rains. Local traders say shortage of supplies as well as the entry tax being charged to vehicles entering UP have led to the rise in prices.
Sample this: The price of tomatoes has doubled from Rs 20 a kg to Rs 40 a kg while onions are giving tears to people at Rs 25 a kg - up from Rs 15 kg a week ago. Shiv Kumar, a vegetable vendor in the Narhi vegetable market, says: “We are getting the stock at high prices from the wholesale market, so we do not have any option but to increase the prices.”
The otherwise cheaper vegetables that had not been on the high price list too have started costing a fortune. “It is hard to imagine that ‘parwal’ is selling for R60 per kg, which was Rs 25 some days ago. The seasonal ‘arbi’ that cost Rs 18- 20 earlier this season, is being sold at Rs 35 per kg,” laments Nirupama, a housewife.
The price rise has not only affected households but also vendors, whose business has been hit. “The rise in prices of vegetables is due to the heavy rain in Uttar Pradesh and neighbouring states that has damaged crops,” says another vendor.
Prices of most vegetables have doubled and those of some like cluster beans, beetroot, brinjal and cucumber have soared by 10 per kg. Potatoes cost Rs 20- 24 in the retail market, twice the regular rate,” says Surendra Kumar, a government employee who lives in Rajendra Nagar.