Prices of vegetables and essential commodities have soared in the past couple of months in Mumbai. While vegetable prices have almost doubled, prices of pulses have risen by over 25 per cent.
The hike in vegetable prices is being blamed on lack of rain and consequent water supply in several villages of Maharashtra.
Ironically, the rains that did lash some of the areas in the State recently destroyed the crop.
According to Sanjay Karande, a vegetable wholesaler at Navi Mumbai APMC wholesale market, "The arrivals in the market are down as production has been hit in the villages. There is hardly any water for the fields."
Added Karande, "Rains were required in Nasik, Pune etc, but it rained in Satara, Sangli Kolhapur heavily and destroyed the crop there."
Traders say the situation is unlikely to improve soon as fresh cultivation will take place in the next monsoon. Arrivals from other States could marginally help.
In pulses, Moong dal, Urad dal and Toor dal have witnessed steep rise in prices. According to Sharad Maru, president of Grains, Rice, Oilseeds Merchant Association (GROMA), "The Moong Dal crop this year was badly affected and hence there is a shortage. There is shortage of Urad dal as well."
Added Maru, "This is lean period for Toor dal as the previous crop is being exhausted. The new crop will come in December-January when its price will come down.
According to Tejas Shah, a Vashi retailer, "Prices of pulses, wheat, sugar are all rising and we fear the worst. The traders have told us that there is a heavy shortage and prices will go up further."