Patna, April 21: Amid reports that the prices of pulses have started moving northwards, Union Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan on Thursday, April 21 said adequate measures have been taken to keep rates under control this season.
"We are aware of reports that prices of pulses are shooting up again, but this time there is no chance of prices rising beyond the normal level as adequate measures have been taken to contain prices," he told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of states and Union Territories of eastern region to review performance of consumer courts, BIS, NTH, legal metrology and price monitoring.
Paswan said the Food Corporation of India has procured 50,000 tonnes of pulses from farmers and imported another 25,000 tonnes to meet the domestic demand. In addition, one lakh tonne pulses will be procured from farmers this season to create a buffer stock, he said.
Paswan said the food and consumer affairs ministry has written to the states to inquire about their demand for pulses but none has reported specific requirement. Referring to rise in dal prices last year, he said hoarders were responsible for creating shortage.
"But this time lessons have been learnt and no price rise will be allowed to take place as adequate buffer stock will be maintained in addition to the produce available in the market at any given time." On the surge in sugar prices recently, the union minister said he expected no further increase given the abundant availability of the produce.
He, however, said the increased price at present rate reflected a fair value of the commodity against input and other cost of farmers.
The government had increased import duty on sugar to 40 per cent against 15 per cent earlier and allowed export of the commodity, besides use of sugarcane for production of ethanol so that the farmers could get fair price, Paswan said.