Nafed, NCCF, Kendriya Bhandar asked to sell onion at 23/kg

New Delhi, Jan 27 (PTI) Food minister K V Thomas todayasked agri-cooperative Nafed, the National CooperativeConsumers'' Federation and Kendriya Bhandar to sell onion at Rs22-23 a kg in the national capital from February 1.

"I instructed Nafed, NCCF and Kendriya Bhandar to bringdown the rate of subsidised onion vendored by them toconsumers in the national capital to Rs 22-23 a kg fromFebruary 1," Thomas told PTI.

"The rate will be further reviewed as the situationimproves with the time," he added.

Nafed, NCCF and Kendriya Bhandar are selling onion at Rs30/kg in the national capital to provide relief to citizensfrom skyrocketing price of the kitchen staple.

The meeting attended by senior officials of premieragri-cooperative Nafed, NCCF and the Consumer Affairs Ministrydiscussed the latest situation of the onion crisisprecipitated by shooting of rates of onion to Rs 70-85 a kg inDelhi and other cities around December 21.

Thomas said "no decision was taken on resumption of onionexport till the situation comes under complete control".

After initially suspending the onion export till January10, the government had banned overseas shipments to indefiniteperiod to rein in high prices.

Nafed and 12 other agencies regulate onion exports.

Official sources said that the minister was told that theonion situation was improving fast as the wholesale rates ofthe bulb have come down substantially to the level of Rs4-17 in the national capital and Rs 13-14 per kg in the mainproducing region Nashik.

"The meeting greeted downward trend of prices of onionin the wholesale markets which will impact the retail marketssoon," the sources said.

Meanwhile, NHRDF (National Horticultural ResearchDevelopment Foundation) which publishes daily rates ofessentials like onion, garlic and potato in prominent cities,said that the wholesale rate of onion came down to Rs 14/kg inLasalgaon and Rs 12 per kg in Pimpalgaon markets in the Nashikdistrict of Maharashtra.

The wholesale rate of the root vegetable was Rs 4-17 perkg in Azadpur (Asia''s biggest wholesale fruits

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