Pradeep Pattanayak

The spiralling price of essential commodities has hit the common man hard. For the people who have been struggling hard to manage their budget following the sharp rise in petrol, diesel and LPG prices, the skyrocketing price of essential commodities has proved to be the last straw. 

Starting from rice to wheat flour, from semolina to refined flour, the prices of everything have been on an upward trend. 

In the last 15 days, the price of rice has increased by Rs 5 to 6 a kilogram while wheat flour has witnessed an increase by Rs 2 to 3 per kilogram. Semolina and refined flour are no different either. They have become costlier by Rs 4 and 5 respectively. 

Even the arhar dal, which was selling at Rs 90 a kilogram 15/20 days ago, is now selling at Rs 110 to 120 a kilogram. 

While consumers are saying that they are in a fix, not being able to understand how to manage the family expenses, the retailers have put the blame on the wholesalers. 

“We can cut daily expenses as we have to eat something at any cost. A decrease in the price of essential commodities would be a relief to one and all,” observed Manju Mohapatra. 

Clarifying the price rise, a retailer Ajay Mallick said, “If the prices of commodities increase at the procuring points, what we can do. We have to sell them keeping something as profit,” 

Meanwhile, the Central government is mulling on a 100 percent ban on the export of broken rice. If effected, several Asian countries including China will have an adverse impact as India accounts for 40 percent global rice trade 

When asked, the general secretary of Odisha Traders’ Association, Sudhakar Panda said, “The government should find out a way so that common people heave a sigh of relief. Our government should take stringent steps to stop the rice from going from our state to other states. This apart, the government should sell the rice and wheat collected by the FCI in the open market.”