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Why vegetable prices are sky high once again

By BS Reporter
March 17, 2015 08:34 IST
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vegetable vendorAfter farmers, it is the consumers’ turn to bear the brunt of the unseasonal rains, which damaged crops in several parts of the country.

In Delhi, prices of major vegetables, particularly the green leafy ones such as methi, cabbage, brinjal, and cauliflower, have nearly doubled over the past week.

Cauliflower, which was selling at Rs 12-14 a kg in the wholesale market, touched Rs 20 a kg on Monday.

Similarly, the wholesale price of brinjal also reached Rs 20-25 a kg at Delhi’s Azadpur Mandi.

According to a report by private weather forecasting company Skymet, vegetable gardens of chillies, brinjal, cauliflower, cabbage, and tomato have been destroyed across Gujarat and Maharashtra.

Several parts of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, and Punjab have also been impacted by the untimely rain.

“There has been a 30-40 per cent increase in vegetable prices at Delhi’s wholesale markets as well.

"This is due to an acute shortage as crops are not being retrieved from the fields because of stagnant water,” Skymet said.

“As of today, the situation is not as bad, but it could worsen in the coming days as farmers will visit the fields as skies clear,” said a leading wholesale trader in Azadpur Mandi.

The widespread and persistent rains across several parts of North India over the weekend have affected major Rabi crops, thereby flattening hopes of a bumper crop harvest.

The rains have damaged standing wheat, mustard, potato and gram have been damaged in parts of Punjab, Haryana and Delhi.

“Farmers are expected to bear output loss of 20-60 per cent in the wake of this last spell,” said Skymet.

While 12 people died in Rajasthan due to rain, lightning, and hailstorm, two reportedly died in Uttarakhand as rains poured the hilly state in the past 24 hours.

Besides, hailstorm in Nashik and other parts of Maharashtra impacted onion, pomegranate and grape crops.

Meanwhile, the Uttar Pradesh government has announced a compensation package for the farmers and decided to procure wheat from their doorsteps.

Other state governments have also started conducting surveys to assess the loss. The Centre is awaiting for reports from the states before finalising a compensation package.

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BS Reporter in Mumbai
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