Centre To Monitor Food Prices During Festival Season

New Delhi: In a bid to keep food prices in check during the festival season, the Centre on Tuesday directed the states to regularly monitor the supply and prices of staples like onions, pulses, tomatoes, edible oils and oilseeds.

The decision was taken in the meeting of the group constituted for monitoring cartelisation, hoarding, speculative trading with regard to essential food items held under the chairmanship of Secretary, Consumer Affairs, Avinash K. Srivastav.

It was decided to ask all the Chief Secretaries of states hold regular meetings with wholesalers, traders, importers, and exporters of such commodities at state and district levels especially during the festive season upto December.

The meeting was attended by representatives from the Agriculture Ministry, the Intelligence Bureau, the Delhi Police, the NAFED, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade, the Ministry of External Affairs and the Delhi government.

The representatives briefed the group about the prevailing scenario with respect to essential food items. It was informed by representatives of Agriculture Ministry that arrivals of kharif onions have started and prices have since shown stable to declining trend. These supplies are likely to increase in the coming days and weeks.

It has been decided to augment availability of pulses across the nation and policy interventions will be recommended at the appropriate time.

The committee of police of NCR states will hold regular meetings under the chairmanship of a senior Delhi Police officer to keep watch on hoarding of stocks by the traders near the state borders of Delhi and take suitable action against them.