New Delhi: It's been over a month but there is no relief from the sky-rocketing onion prices. The spike has hit the pockets adversely and left us teary-eyed (quite literally). Onion is currently priced between Rs 90 per kg to Rs 100 per kg in many cities while at some places, it's also over Rs 100 per kg. Onion prices scored a century in West Bengal earlier this week and the rate is somewhat similar in Thiruvananthapuram. In Uttar Pradesh, onion is being sold at Rs 70-90 per kg.
On the deeply-concerning issue, the Central Government on Wednesday said that it cannot control the hike across the country as it was not in its hands. To a question on when will the onion prices would come down, Union Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said, ''It's not in our hands.'' He, however, added that the government is taking every step possible to contain the onion price rise.
People are now trying to cut down on the kitchen staple. "I bought onions today because we cannot avoid using it. It is difficult to buy onions for Rs 100. We are labourers and something has to be done to reduce the price. For the last two months, the price of onions has been really high. We are trying to minimise its usage. The government is not intervening. It should take action to reduce the price," a customer Seethalekshmi from Thiruvananthapuram told news agency ANI.
Meanwhile, a vendor in Nagpur said, "We are purchasing onions at Rs 60-70 per kg, and then selling at Rs 80 per kg in the market. So, due to rise in price, customers buying only 250-500 gm onions now."
Indians are reeling under pressure due to the significant hike in onion prices that is looming for quite some time now.
Onion is largely cultivated in Maharashtra, Karnataka and parts of Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat. The situation has come to this pass because of the heavy rains in Maharastra's Nashik, which resulted in a large quantity of the bulb rotting following water seepage.
Home Minister Amit Shah had earlier chaired a meeting to implement the Union Cabinet's decision to import 1.2 lakh metric tonnes of onions. The Central Government has been holding regular meetings on ways to check the rising price of onions.
Earlier in September, in an attempt to control the rising onion prices, the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry had banned the export of onions with "immediate effect" until further orders. Later, due to an acute shortage of onion supplies and soaring retail prices, the government decided to import onions from Iran, Turkey, Egypt and Afghanistan.
(With agencies inputs)