Onion price rise brings tears to many

patient wait: People standing in a long queue for onions at Rytu Bazar in Eluru. –

patient wait: People standing in a long queue for onions at Rytu Bazar in Eluru. –   | Photo Credit: Photo: M. Anil Kumar

G. Nagaraja

Government outlets at Rytu Bazar flooded with consumers

Prices touch close to Rs. 20 per kg in open market

Recent flash floods cause damage to crop

ELURU: Onion, the most essential food item, virtually leaves the housewives in tears, thanks to its acute scarcity and resultant price rise. It is almost now out of the reach for both the rich and the poor. The Government outlets such as Rytu Bazars have been flooded with the onion consumers daily with persistent enquiries on its arrival and with the concern over its shooting prices.

The demand for the produce is so felt and worrying that an aged women suffered mild injuries in a stampede caused by a mob of onion consumers at Rytu Bazar at Pathebad in the city on Monday. The onion outlet opened by the administration at the Rytu Bazar witnessed a serpentine queue that seemed never ending for them. The consumers went wild and flooded the outlet, leading to a stampede when their agonising wait failed to fetch them the most sought-after poor man’s vegetable.

According to Ch. Srilatha, Estate Officer of the Rytu Bazar, she had received only seven tonnes of onion on Monday from the Department of Civil Supplies for the II-Town area as against the demand of 12 tonnes per week. The personnel of the Rytu Bazar distributed among consumers the scarce commodity at the rate of 2kgs for each household. The families have to manage with the meagre quantities till the next arrival. “We may have to learn cooking curries without onions. That days are not far away”, comments a woman, who came to the Rytu Bazar seeking to know about the next arrival of the item, while throwing tantrums on the government.

The price of onion is close to Rs 20 per kg in the open market. In a bid to ensure price stabilisation, the Civil Supplies Department intervened and has been selling the item at Rs 7 per kg through its outlets at Rutu Bazars. The shooting prices and scarcity of onions are attributed to crop failure in Kurnool and Kapada districts caused by the recent flash floods. The State is now heavily falling back on Maharashtra for onion. The traders are giving a new twist to the problem that even foreign countries like Bangladesh and Nepal kept depending on Maharashtra for onion, aggravating the demand. The once sandy soils around the city, conducive for onion crop, turned into house plots due to urbanisation, turning the situation from bad to worse.

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