Centre caps prices of pulses at Rs 120 per kg

Centre caps prices of pulses at Rs 120 per kg

Centre caps prices of pulses at Rs 120 per kg
Bringing a much needed relief, the Centre has put a cap on skyrocketing price of pulses and asked the states not to sell tur and urad beyond Rs 120/kg.

For this, the Centre has decided to release 10,000 tonnes of pulses to states. It will give unmilled tur dal at Rs 66/kg and urad at Rs 88/kg to states for retail sale. The states are expected to process and sell the pulses at not more than Rs 120/kg.

“States have also been asked to keep a close watch on the prices and to take stringent action against hoarding of the commodity. The Centre has already empowered the states to impose stock limits on the pulses to ensure easy availability,” an official statement said after the decision.

Prices of urad dal have reached Rs 200 per kg in the retail market while that of tur or arhar have reached Rs 170 per kg despite the wholesale price inflation moving into the negative territory for the past 17 consecutive months and the government claiming that prices of food items have stabilised.

Besides production being less than the current requirement of pulses, hoarding is one of the main reasons why pulses have remained costlier in the past as many months.

To check this, certain states have asked wholesale traders to submit daily sales report to the local administration. Traders have also been asked to submit rate chart of different variety of pulses. Stock verification of godowns is also being conducted on a daily basis in certain states, an official said.

Pulses production in the country is expected to be 170 lakh tonne in 2015-16 crop year while the requirement is estimated to be 235 lakh tonnes. The government has procured 50,000 tonnes of pulses while 25,000 tonnes is expected to be imported in due course. Besides, the FCI is also creating a buffer stock of pulses under which a stock of 2 lakh tonne will be available.

The government is also initiating procurement of rabi pulses and has targeted to procure around 1 lakh tonnes of black gram and masoor to build buffer stocks.

Despite being the largest producer of pulses in the world, India imports the commodity as the domestic demand is far greater than the production.

Pulses production, however, is expected to be better this year after the Met department predicted better monsoon rains in the Central India where the commodity is produced on a large scale.