The Chandigarh Administration’s claims of making onions available at nominal cost have been belied as the Centre has informed them that it will take 10 more days to supply those onions.
The administration had announced around a week ago that they would make onions available at the rate of Rs 60-65 per kg as ‘immediate relief’ to residents.
Vinod P Kavle, IAS officer who handles the department of food supply and consumer affairs as secretary, said, “It will take another 10 days for the onions to reach. We have asked the government to send us onions so that we can sell those at nominal rates to residents.”
The chairman of the Chandigarh Federation of Sectors Welfare Association of Chandigarh, Baljinder Singh Bittu, said, “I think help from the administration will arrive at a time when the rates of onions will gradually come down. What is the use of making such announcements when the help is not given to residents immediately?”
He added, “This is the time when people actually need some respite because the rates have shot up.”
In the last 10 days, prices of onion have gone through the roof with one kilogram of onion being sold for Rs 140 per kg.
In the meeting that was convened by UT Administrator V P Singh Badnore on December 4, he had stressed the need to provide immediate relief to people due to the surge in prices of onion. It was announced that the Chandigarh Administration will be setting up stalls across the city to sell onions at this rate.
Following the meeting, the Department of Food & Supplies and Consumer Affairs and Legal Metrology, UT, had taken up this matter with the Department of Consumer Affairs, Government of India, and urged them to direct the National Agricultural Co-operative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) to make available good quality onions at the earliest which would cost around Rs 60-65 per kg.
The Administrator has also directed the Department of Food and Supplies and Consumer Affairs and Legal Metrology to conduct regular checks to ensure that no hoarding or malpractices in the sale of onions takes place in the city, and strict action should be taken against those found indulging in malpractices.