Govt’s fair price shops a hit with customers

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
Govt’s fair price shops a hit with customers

Sep 26, 2014-

The government’s fair price shops have been besieged by customers due to their reduced rates, and rice and sugar are the fastest selling items, said the supervisor of the stores.

Encouraged by the response, Nepal Food Corporation (NFC) on Thursday increased the discount on rice and wheat to Rs 5 per kg from Rs 3. As per the new price list, Jeera Masino rice costs Rs 53 per kg, Basmati rice Rs 95.50 per kg and Mota rice Rs 39 per kg. Wheat costs Rs 28 per kg compared to Rs 33 at other times.

“After a recent meeting of all the concerned government officials, we decided to give a discount of Rs 5 per kg on rice,” said Nawaraj Upadhyay, deputy general manager at NFC. “This will provide greater relief to customers during the festival season.”

NFC said its daily rice sales amounted to 100-150 quintals from its various shops located in the Kathmandu valley.

Along with NFC, three other state-owned enterprises—National Trading Limited (NTL), Salt Trading Corporation (STC) and Dairy Development Corporation (DDC)—have set up fair price shops at eight places in the valley. These stores are located at Ram Shah Path, Teku, Koteshwor, Kalimati, Thapathali and Satungal in Kathmandu, Lagankhel in Lalitpur and Surya Binayak in Bhaktapur.

Gita Niraula, sales chief at NTL, said that customer flow was 10 percent higher than last year. “As we have offered discounts of up to 11 percent on various branded electronic products this year, we have received an overwhelming response,” she added.

NTL offers rice cooker, mixer, iron, air conditioner and kitchen appliances from Samsung, Bajaj and other brands. According to Niraula, NTL’s sales amounted to Rs 3.7 million in the first nine days.

Meanwhile, Saroj Nidhi Tiwari, STC department chief, said that these shops had been playing a key role in keeping market prices stable. “We are selling sugar at

Rs 63 per kg which is Rs 5 less than the market price,” he said. “Since the opening of fair price shops, artificial price hikes have been controlled.”

Tiwari said that an increasing number of people were buying essentials like sugar, oil, rice and pulses from fair price shops.

STC also sells other essential commodities like rice, pulses, spices, salt and oil.

Similarly, DDC is selling ghee at Rs 740 per litre. It also sells milk, yogurt, ice cream and paneer from its stall at the fair price shops. These discount stores will remain open till October 31.

Published: 27-09-2014 10:26

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