Powerful syndicates are pulling strings behind the scenes and artificially hiking up prices of essential commodities including rice. This has renewed fears of a price hike during Ramadan which will begin in late April. Authorities have failed repeatedly to keep prices stable according to market sources and consumers rights groups.
Prices of rice and sugar are on the rice due to manipulation by unscrupulous traders. However, commerce and finance ministers have stated that the government is taking several initiatives to ensure that there is no market crisis during Ramadan. As a part of this, Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) will be procuring sugar and refined soybean oil from local supplies.
Consumer rights groups are getting worried as Ramadan is fast approaching and the rising prices will be exacerbated during that time. Middle class and lower middle class families will face tremendous strain as prices will go well beyond regular people’s budget.
Syndicates which are actively
trying to increase prices and causing
people to suffer must be
given exemplary punishment
The government needs to take immediate steps to control the prices of commodities before Ramadan starts. Syndicates which are actively trying to increase prices and causing people to suffer must be given exemplary punishment. They should be handed stricter sentences in order to deter future traders from acting dishonestly.
Higher levels of imports are also needed to ensure stable prices during Ramadan. In previous years, we have seen market crisis and price hike taking a toll on the pockets of general people. The authorities must be vigilant in the time before Ramadan and closely monitor the price trends.
The price of onions has been on the rise since late September when India banned its exports. The situation has brought to light the helplessness of people when prices of essential commodities rise. The government must therefore prioritize price stability in the market.