This Rakhi people will have to shell out more for sweets, as confectioners have decided to raise their prices by 5 to 10% before the festival.Confectioners said they were already under pressure due to the increase in their input cost and now the government's decision to impose 5.5% VAT on sugar would add to their problems.
"Our margins have been slashed due to increase in input costs," Narinder Pal Singh, president of Punjab Halwai Association said." Prices of besan have shot up to Rs 42 per kg from Rs 34 to 38 per kg within a month. We are also facing labour shortage and have to pay extra to afford more staff. In such a scenario, the government has imposed VAT on sugar. We have no option but to increase prices of sweets before Rakhi."
Power shortage had made the situation worse, said sweet shop owners. "We are facing acute shortage of power and have to depend on generators," Narinder Pal Singh said "We have to use around 100 litres of diesel daily for generators and this costs around Rs 1.5 to 2 lakh per month, which is an additional burden on us. Apart from this ghee prices have also increased from Rs 3,800 to Rs 4500 per tin (15kg)."
The revised prices could come into effect from August 1 because Rakhi is on August 2.