Pulses touch Rs 210/kg; 5,800 tonnes seized from hoarders

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NEW DELHI: Over 5,800 tonnes of pulses have been seized in five states during raids conducted on hoarders even as the prices continue to rise and touched Rs 210 per kg.

In view of skyrocketing rates of pulses, the Cabinet Secretary today discussed many factors pertaining to prices, production, procurement and availability during a meeting with secretaries of Consumer Affairs, Agriculture, Commerce and other ministries.

The action taken by state governments to prevent hoarding of pulses was also reviewed at the meeting, besides discussing the progress on sale of imported pulses at subsidised rates in Delhi and other states.

“We had directed state governments to enforce the Essential Commodities Act more stringently.

As a result, some state governments have carried out surprised inspections and seized large quantities of pulses,” Consumer Affairs Secretary C Vishwanath told PTI after the meeting.

According to the Consumer Affairs Ministry, over 5,800 tonnes of pulses have been seized in five states in the last few months.

Around 2,546 tonnes have been seized from Telangana, 2,295 tonnes from Madhya Pradesh, 600 tonnes from Andhra Pradesh, 360 tonnes from Karnataka and 1 tonne from Maharashtra.

The Rajasthan government has also intensified enforcement of stock limits. Similar action against hoarding is also being taken in other states, an official statement said.

“Raids are being carried out even today at places like Mysore and Gulbarga in Karnataka and also in Tamil Nadu,” another Consumer Affairs Ministry official said.

Continuing an upward trend, tur prices today rose further to Rs 210 per kg in the retail markets. Urad rates have risen up to Rs 198/kg, moong Rs 135, masoor Rs 120 and gram (chana) Rs 84 per kg. Prices have shot up due to fall in output by two million tonnes in the 2014-15 on deficient and untimely rains.

To control skyrocketing prices, the Centre has taken several measures such as creating a buffer stock of 40,000 tonnes, sale of imported pulses at cheaper rates and imposition of stock limits on traders as well as departmental stores, licenced food processors, importers and exporters.

“All of these measures are expected to improve supply position and arrival of pulses in the market thereby moderating the prices of pulses,” an official statement said.

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