Rehan Qayoom Mir
Srinagar, Jul 21: There is no more shortage of tomatoes and the prices have also come to the ground in Kashmir.
Chairman Kashmir Fruit Association Bashir Ahmad Basheer told the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that the prices of local tomatoes in mandis here are around Rs 60 to 70 per kg.
As the local tomato ripens up, the prices will drop further, he said, adding that the local crop was very less due to continuous rains which led to “considerable” damage to it.
“We might receive supplies from outside, but the rains should stop and the weather should remain friendly,” Bashir said.
Elaborating on the recent price hike, Bashir said, “The prices were touching the sky only because of the flood situation in Himachal. The demand was high and supply was very less.” He said the price will further lower in the coming 10 to 15 days. He also said that the untimely rains damaged many vegetables.
“We are selling it at Rs 60 to 70 per kg here in Srinagar mandi, and in markets, the price is around 100 to 110 rupees. We have issued a rate list through newspapers and the people should call the concerned department if they find anybody selling at higher prices,” he said.
Many local vendors of Srinagar City said tomatoes are now available in good quantity in the market and that the shortage has now “almost ended”.
They attributed the soaring tomato prices to two main factors: delayed monsoon onset and unseasonal rain and flooding in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka during harvest periods.
Meanwhile, an official release by the Press Information Bureau (PIB), a copy of which lies with KNO reads, “The Department of Consumer Affairs has directed NCCF and NAFED to sell tomatoes at the retail price of Rs 70 per kg rate from July 20, 2023, in view of the declining trend in tomato prices.”
The tomatoes procured by NCCF and NAFED had been retailed, initially, at Rs 90 per kg and then reduced to Rs 80 per kg from July 16, 2023. The reduction to Rs 70 kg will further benefit the consumers, it reads—(KNO)