Srinagar: The continuous snowfall in Kashmir has come with misfortunes for the people as the authorities failed to check the prices of vegetables, fruits, and other eatables.
The prices of vegetables and other essentials have increased as the Food Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs (FCS&CA) Department has failed to regulate the prices of all essentials sold to the consumers.
The vendors and retailers have resorted to illegal profiteering owing to the failure of the FSC&CA Department to press the enforcement squad for regulation of market prices.
“As the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway is closed, fruit and vegetable sellers have raised the prices of all items in violation of the government fixed rates,” said Saqib Dar of Baramulla.
The consumers complained that the enforcement squad of the department was not visible at any place, giving a free hand to the retailers to resort to illegal trade practices.
“It has become a routine for these vegetable and fruit vendors to increase the rates of eatables when the highway gets closed or as soon as it snows in Kashmir,” Dar said.
The department recently issued a revised rate list of vegetables and fruits to prevent overcharging and fleecing of consumers by the shopkeepers.
However, complaints continue to pour in from all districts regarding the violation of the government-fixed rates of the eatables.
“The essentials and other eatables are still sold at exorbitant rates in blatant violation of the new rates fixed by the government,” said Riyaz Ahmad of Kupwara.
Similar complaints were received from other districts about the poor implementation of government-fixed rates.
“Most of the vegetable vendors are selling eatables in violation of the new rates and don’t have the revised rate list available with them,” the consumers complained.
The consumers are complaining of inflation in markets owing to the absence of checking squads of the FCS&CA Department in the markets.
“The rate list has remained confined to only papers and the consumers have been left at the receiving end,” said Nazir Ahmad of Baramulla.
Recording 7.10 percent inflation during November, J&K continues to lead the charts in terms of recording the highest retail inflation across the country.
Director FCS&CA Department, Kashmir, Abdul Salam Mir told Greater Kashmir that the enforcement squad was active at various places on Wednesday.
“I will convey all the concerned officials to press the checking squad in the markets at all the places. We will ensure that inflation isn’t allowed in the markets,” Mir said.