PAKISTAN: PRICE HIKE
Local News Islamabad, ISLAMABAD
News ID : 74666 Video Version : 1 Script Version : 1
Prices of vegetables, tomatoes soar in Pakistan
Consumers across Pakistan groan under high prices of food and vegetables.
Shotlist: ISLAMABAD , PAKISTAN (NOVEMBER 20 , 2019) (VNA – ACCESS ALL)
01 VARIOUS OF FRUIT AND VEGETABLE MARKET
In Islamabad’s markets, tomatoes were selling at the rate of Rs 240 per kilogram on Wednesday (November 20).
Consumers, already groaning under rising prices of electricity , gas and fuel, are blaming the government as well as traders for the skyrocketing prices of essential food items.
“I work 24 hours , and yet I do not have enough, because of the inflation. Look at the price of tomatoes; they are around Rs 250 per kilogram; they are selling for Rs 200 in the wholesale market. No vegetable is less than Rs 100 per kilogram,” grumbled Allah Ditta, a daily wage labourer in Islamabad.
In order to bring the prices of tomatoes down, the government has decided to import tomatoes from Iran.
Officials of All Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Exporters, Importers, and Merchants Association say the government has issued import permit of 4,500 tonnes of Iranian tomato and some containers have already reached the Taftan border. The containers are expected to cross into Pakistan’s Balochistan province in a day or two.
However, this has failed to bring any relief for low paid consumers, because the prices of every day items of food have not come down.
Many customers, searching for vegetables and food items in the market in Islamabad on Wednesday said they had either stopped buying tomatoes and other costly vegetables , or are only buying the minimum amount for their daily cooking needs.
“I swear that my children go without food for several days. They eat one time and go without food the next time. I have not paid my house rent for the past two months, “ said Cart Vendor Mohammad Shabbir Ahmed.
Although some people were bitter about the fledgling government of Imran Khan because of the price hike that has come about since Khan’s government took over last year, others said the new government should be given time to set things right.
However, everyone said the government needed to clamp down on traders and middle men who were responsible for taking every day items beyond the reach of the common man.
“Inflation has reached its peak at this time. The poor and middle classes are very perturbed. The prices of everyday commodities, instead of going down, are going up day by day. On behalf of all poor people in this area, I request the government to control this,” said fruit trader Zubair Khan.
Inflation is at its highest in more than five years, and has shocked many Pakistanis who voted for Prime Minister Imran Khan and his promise to eradicate poverty, create jobs and build an Islamic welfare state.