Over the past few days, the prices of vegetables have been rising, an unusual phenomenon for this season.

While drumstick was sold at retail outlets at Rs.140 a kg last week it was Rs.160 on Monday. Onions are being sold between Rs.70 and Rs.90 a kg in the retail market. Among the cheapest vegetables are cabbage, potato, beetroot, chowchow and raddish which are selling at Rs.15 to Rs.17 a kg at retail stores. While green peas, from Uttar Pradesh, was priced at Rs.40 a kg, the same quantity of bitter gourd and saber beans, which are grown in Tamil Nadu, cost Rs.32 and Rs.40 respectively.

V.R. Soundararajan, advisor to Koyambedu Wholesale Onion Traders' Association, said rain had affected the crops grown in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra.

Vijay Kumar, a grocer in Kilpauk, said people bought large quantities of onions as they feared that prices would rise further.

A householder in Velachery said carrot, beans and saber beans were sold for Rs.60 a kg each. Pumpkins were priced at Rs. 20 a kg.

Different prices in website

However, the CMDA's website gave a different set of prices, with cabbage at Rs.7 a kg and green plantain at Rs.2 apiece. According to the website, the price of onion could range from Rs.40 to Rs.60 and potato, beans, raddish and bitter gourd are priced Rs.11 to Rs.15 a kg.

A press release from TUCS said that the vegetables, per kg, in its 10 outlets are sold at the following rates: onion - Rs.40; potato - Rs.20; tomato - Rs.35; beetroot - Rs.20; carrot - Rs.35; cabbage - Rs.16; beans - Rs.30; and green chillies - Rs.20.

The vegetables were being procured from farmers' cooperative associations in towns such as Hosur and Krishnagiri for the benefit of consumers, the release said.

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