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Price control

Post by on Friday, July 8, 2022

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As the Eid-ul-Adha approaches, even the commodities that do not depend on monsoon, rains and crops have started flaunting price tags depicting numbers double than what was a month back. It is a shame that Kashmiris resort to such deplorable practices on festive occasions just to earn some easy bucks. On Eid-ul-Adha the consumption of mutton in the valley is high owing to the sacrificial offering which is rigorously observed by Muslims all across Jammu and Kashmir. As per the latest order issued by the Director Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs (FCS&CA), the rates for Delhi Walla and Merino Cross varieties of Sheep have been fixed at Rs 310 a kg while as those of Bakerwal and Kashmiri varieties at Rs 295 a kg. The rate for goats has been fixed at Rs 285 per kg. However, despite fixing rates, many reports are coming that dealers/traders are selling sacrificial animals at exorbitant prices thereby completely overlooking the directives issued by the government.  While the government has done the job of notifying the rates and pressed upon the dealers to abide by the rule, it has only done half the homework. Market checking squads are seldom seen on ground and those flouting the norms have got encouraged. It is not a one-off event when profiteers go scot free, as around festival time hoarding and profiteering is a common affair. Neither is profiteering restricted to mutton and poultry. Mere notifications are not enough to bring to a close these unwarranted trends. Government must strengthen its market checking squad by increasing the number of its officials and also by making the officials accountable. It is mostly their dereliction to duty which is responsible for hoarding and profiteering in the valley. Punishments must also be exacting in order to discourage the dealers who resort to such practices. People must also act responsible and shoulder the responsibility. By informing the officials of these practices, unscrupulous elements can be identified and served punitive action. Department of FCS&CA has an additional responsibility to ensure that stock of commodities is taken care of as any shortage during the festival time deals a hard blow to the department. Besides making customary announcements of framing market checking squads, it is time to do something practical which checks the unwarranted profiteering, regulates the market and keep the swindlers and black marketers at bay.

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