Srinagar: Amid economic slowdown, staggering inflation in Jammu and Kashmir rate of 7.39 percent is breaking the back of common people as it makes J&K costliest place to live in India.
The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation’s report on monthly retail inflation has come on the heels of CMIE’s report which has pegged unemployment rate in UT at 21.6 percent.
As per MOSPI’s report J&K has the highest rate of inflation which is even higher than the national inflation rate which is 4.35 far below J&K’s inflation rate.
As per the data, it is for the three consecutive month J&K’s inflation rate is above 7 percent.
Jammu and Kashmir’s inflation has witnessed an increase despite the fact that national retail inflation eased to 4.35 per cent in August mainly due to softening food prices, according to official data released.
However in Jammu and Kashmir despite slowing national inflation rate, there is no breather for inhabitants of the Union Territory. Major factors attributing to the rising costs in the state is heavy dependence on imports from other places. J&K on an average imports goods and food items worth Rs 40,000 crore annually from other states. The ever increasing petroleum prices have become a major reason for the escalating inflation in the state, given the heavy transportation costs and tough terrain. With around 52 percent state and central taxes on fuel, the prices of petrol and diesel have shot up.
“Higher inflation rate in Jammu and Kashmir is a cause of concern for all of us, as it burdens the common man’s pocket and also reduces savings. Therefore the need of the hour is that government must take proactive measures to contain inflation rate in J&K which is higher than the national average rate,” said Muhammad Ismail, a trader.
Retail inflation declined to 4.35 percent in September, mainly due to lower food prices, according to government data released on Tuesday.
The Consumer Price Index-based (CPI) inflation was at 5.30 percent in August and at 7.27 percent in September 2020.
As per the data released by the National Statistical Office (NSO), the inflation in the food basket eased to 0.68 percent in September 2021, significantly down from 3.11 percent in the preceding month.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), which mainly factors in CPI-based inflation while arriving at its bi-monthly monetary policy, has been tasked by the government to keep it at 4 percent, with a tolerance band of 2 percent on either side.
Last week, RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das had said that overall, the CPI headline momentum is moderating, which combined with favourable base effects in the coming months could bring about a substantial softening in inflation in the near term.
RBI has projected the CPI inflation at 5.3 percent for 2021-22: 5.1 percent in the second quarter, 4.5 percent in third; 5.8 percent in the last quarter of the fiscal, with risks broadly balanced.