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Cabinet reviews price rise of essential commodities

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Mar 16 (UNI) The Cabinet Committee on Prices (CCP) today reviewed the price situation, particularly of wheat, sugar and potato and decided to take measures that include monitoring of the distribution norms for sugar mills and smooth landing of imported wheat.

Acknowledging that the prices of the three commodities are ''slightly high'', the CCP, presided over by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, decided to tighten the monitoring of the release of levy sugar by the mills.

''While international prices have firmed up, sugar production is likely to be very high this year,'' Finance Minister P Chidambaram said adding that prices would moderate over a period of time.

Rejecting reports that the unseasonal rains had damaged the crop, Mr Chidambaram said, according to the assessment of the Agricultural Ministry, it would ''rather help the wheat crop.'' The proposed import of five lakh tonnes for the southern states would ease the situation. In the northern states, the prices have already started moderating, he said.

Asked about potato, he said the prices can never be constant for every commodity. ''The housewife knows what to buy and when,'' he remarked.

However, he said that the overall inflation at 4.2 per cent last week was moderate.

UNI SN-PC NK KP2043

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