HYDERABAD: The new Goods and Services Tax (GST) might have spared most essential commodities. But, there seems to be no respite in sight for Hyderabadis from the spiralling vegetable prices. Hit by a severe shortage owing to the recent spells of heavy rainfall that have left standing crops damaged, the price of certain vegetables has shot up drastically in the city.
Among those that have become dearer are tomatoes and chillies that have touched `70 and `90 per kg respectively, in various parts of Hyderabad. Even Rythu Bazaars have revised their rate cards increasing the prices by 20-30 per cent in comparison to last week, said consumers ruing how bitter gourd, cauliflower, carrot, capsicum and French beans too have become more expensive in the last few days.
“I was shocked to find the local supermarket selling to matoes for `70. Even roadside vendors are now quoting that price. It is going to be very difficult for common people to survive if basic vegetables like tomato become so costly,” said Usha P, a resident of Begumpet.
Authorities confirm that the situation is unlikely to improve over the next few weeks.Following a review meeting earlier this week, officials of the agriculture and marketing department said there was litt le scope to control the prices of the vegetables as most of them were being brought in from far off distances to tide over the current shortage. While items like carrot, they said, was being transported to the city from Delhi, Indore, Ooty, Chikkaballapur, green chillies were being procured from Kurnool, Uttar Pradesh and Meerut.
“There is a shortage of some vegetables which has led to rise in prices. We are trying to ensure that there is constant supply of tomatoes and chillies by bringing them from Madanapalle which is the major supplier of tomatoes. This year, since the tomato crop in Maharashtra has been damaged, Madanapalle is catering to Maharashtra and even Tamil Nadu,” said G Lakshmi Bai, additional director, agriculture marketing department adding that the prices were unlikely to drop till the local vegetable season starts in August.