Traders express outrage over outdated price list

Traders argue that district officials should have consulted with traders before preparing rate list

Qaiser Shirazi December 28, 2020
Traders express outrage over outdated price list


The flatbread makers, milkmen and grocers have rejected the new rate lists issued by the deputy commissioner (DC) and instead announced selling products on unofficial rates, the office-bearers of different traders' bodies told The Express Tribune on Sunday.

They lamented how the items could be sold at official rates when they were not available on the wholesale price mentioned in the list. They said that the rate list was prepared by district officials sitting in air-conditioned rooms with no knowledge of the trade, adding that they should have consulted with the traders.

Karyana Merchant Association (KMA) Head Pervaiz Butt said that the retail rates of pulses and lentils set in the official list were five years old. He mentioned that the wholesale price of the commodities has gone beyond the retail price in the current rate list.

The official further stated that they were ready to sell items with a profit margin of Rs3 to Rs5 if the DC ensured provision of cheaper wholesale rates.

Sabzi Mandi Markazi Anjuman Tajiran President Ghulam Qadir Mir demanded the administration set prices after consultation with traders and wholesalers while Naanbai Association Chairman Shafique Qureshi said that roti and naan were priced at Rs7 and Rs10 five years ago, respectively.

He added that they would sell flatbread at the official rates if the prices of gram flour and milk were restored to what they were five years ago.

Furthermore, the Milkmen Union office-bearers, including Khawar and Arshad Gujjar, said that the cost of milk per litre had already surged to Rs100 during the tenure of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government while rejecting the official price of milk and yogurt fixed at Rs90 per litre and Rs105 per kilogramme, respectively.

Butchers also rejected official rates of mutton and beef in the official price list. They said that it was only possible if the government ensured meat supply in Rs100 less than the retail price it has fixed.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 28th, 2020.


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