Centre Warns Of Strict Action Against Hoarding Onions
Piles of onions sit at a storehouse of the APMC wholesale market in Lasalgaon, Maharshtra, India. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Centre Warns Of Strict Action Against Hoarding Onions

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The Centre on Wednesday warned of strict action against hoarding of onion amid supply disruption fears due to floods in parts of major growing states of Maharashtra and Karnataka.

The Department of Consumer Affairs reviewed the price situation of onion during a high-level meeting chaired by the Secretary, DoCA, Avinash K Srivastava, an official release said.

All the concerned stakeholders, including National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India, National Cooperative Consumers’ Federation of India, and Safal (a Mother Dairy outlet) were present at the meeting.

Parts of major onion producing states, including Maharashtra and Karnataka, are reeling under floods, raising fears of disruption in supply.

"Onions for retailing by Safal are being made available at present from the government stock built under Price Stabilisation Fund" an official release after the meeting said.

It has also been decided that cap the retail price of onion at Safal at Rs 23.90 per kg (for Grade A variety). For this, Safal will continue to receive onions from the government buffer at the same rate at which it was offered on Wednesday, the release added.

"The price situation would be monitored regularly by the department for appropriate intervention. Government will also consider strict action against hoarding and profiteering activities and evaluate the need for imposing a minimum export price on onion if the situation so demands," the release said.

Safal, the largest retail chain of fresh fruits and vegetables in Delhi, has also been asked to double the quantity of its retailing operations for onions.

National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd. and NCCF were also directed to retail onions at prices similar to that of Safal through their outlets and mobile vans.

Further, onions from the government buffer would be offered at cost price to large retailers for supplies to the public at reasonable prices.

Also read: Centre To Immediately Constitute Teams To Visit Flood-Hit States

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