Pulses dearer by Rs 35 in a month

- SUMAN BASHYAL, Kathmandu
Pulses dearer by Rs 35 in a month

May 14, 2015-

Prices of many daily essentials, especially pulses, have soard in the Kathmandu Valley. Pulses have become dearer by up to Rs 35 per kg within a month. Traders attributed the rising prices to decreased production in countries from where Nepal imports.

Retail price of Masuro rose to Rs155 from Rs140 per kg, while Rahar that was selling for Rs145 kg last month now costs Rs180 per kg.

“We have to depend on the international market for pulses and the prices are high there,” said Kumud Dugar, managing director of KL Dugar Group. He said Nepal imports pulses from India, Canada and Burma, among other countries. “India, from where we make the biggest import, is facing shortage of pulses as early rain damaged crops,” he said, adding the price could go up further.

As pulses are in short supply, some retailers have been found to be selling them at higer prices. During Post’s observation, some retailers at New Baneshwor and Baluwatar were found selling Rahar at Rs190-200 per kg.  

The Department of Commerce and Supplies is also keeping tabs on black marketers and hoarders. “We have been mobilising inspection teams in many areas after we received complaints about the shortage of pulses and artificial price hike,” said Hari Narayan Belbase, director of department.

The department plans to hold a meeting with traders dealing in pulses. “Our scheduled meeting was hampered by Tuesday’s earthquake, but we will hold another meeting soon,” he said.

Belbase said pulses are in short supply as some of the store houses were buried due to the recent earthquakes. “We have been told that a store house of a big wholesaler Rajesh Agrawal got buried due to earthquake,” he said.

Some retailers blamed wholesalers for the shortage. “We are still facing difficulties in getting enough products from wholesalers as most of them are living in their homes closing shops,” said Yuvraj Sharma, proprietor of Sunkokhi Kirana Store at Ratopool.

He said reports of a possible price hike also created panic among buyers. “Prices of rahar and masuro, among other pulses, are sure to rise further due to the decrease in production in India. So consumers are purchasing in bulk,” he added.

Published: 15-05-2015 08:39

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