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Ask Santa to gift onions this New Year
The onions that brings tears in our eyes while cutting and chopping, have brought tears in many eyes for the other reason i.e. price rise.
ARE YOU waiting for Santa Claus to pass by and gift you something valuable? Ask Santa this time to gift you vegetables; the best gift you can ever have in this season of price hike.

The onions that brings tears in our eyes while cutting and chopping, has brought tears in many eyes for the other reason i.e price rise. But this was not the case in Gorakhpur, Santa brought smiles on gloomy faces in Gorakhpur by presenting them with the unusual gift of onions. “Who says that onion brings tears in one’s eyes? Mine bring smiles,” said Santa. He further stated, “I am supposed to bring smiles on the faces of the people. And believe me, this time I have been more successful in my endeavour.”

This is the story for just a day when aam aadmi can hope for Santa to come and help. But for the rest of the days it depends on traders and the government to tackle the serious issue of price hike. While the agriculture and food minister Sharad Pawar have assured that within two-three weeks the market price will go down, the government has shown its worries on the doubling of food inflation rate especially on the soaring prices of onion, tomato and fruits. Economists also believe that the rate of fruits and vegetables will gain momentum in the upcoming weeks.

The food inflation rate recorded in the very first week of December was 9.46% which later accrued to 12.13% as per the last recorded inflation rate for food. “The index for food articles group rose 2.3% to 185.8 from 181.7 for the previous week due to higher prices of fruits and vegetables (6%), fish-marine (5%), fish-inland and condiments and spices (3% each), barley (2%) and pearl millet (bajra), horsebean (urad), maize and rice (1% each).”

Talking alone of onions, its price has seen a raise of 33.48% annually. The supply of onions has increased in last two years at a rate of 66% but during the years 2008-2010 the wholesale price of onion saw a rise of around 300%. On a single day of December it was recorded that wholesale traders bought onions in Delhi at the rate of Rs 34 per kg. Same onions which were brought at a much lower rate were sold at a retail price of Rs 80 per kg. After including the transport costs and other miscellaneous costs, a wide difference of Rs 40 per kg i.e. 135% was found between wholesale and retail prices.

Delhi is not the only sufferer; other states of the country are victims of similar profit-making every day. According to the officials, the deficit in production of onions due to heavy rains in some regions, the hoarding of onions in cold storage and later selling it at high prices, the upsurge in exports are some of the reasons for such contiguous hike in the prices.

For the time being some measures have been taken to prevent the issue from gaining more political momentum. The export of onions has been ceased till 15th January. The hoarders have also found that the onions have started to rot in their storage. These causes have led to a marginal drop-off in the prices of the onions.

“This rise and fall of prices in this part of the state will continue till April because people might hoard stocks for few days pushing the prices higher. But simultaneously, the hoarders will have to throw open their stocks after a few days as onions can not be held back for long and this would bring the prices down,” told Satish Sonkar, the president of U.P. Fruits and Vegetables Wholesalers Association.

In the entire scenario of the political melodrama of price hike of not only onions but also other eatables like milk, edible oil, garlic, etc everyone is trying their hands in making super profits. But no one has indicated the plight of aam aadmi. As usual moneymakers will earn a great profit in these two-three weeks and the common masses will suffer on their part.

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