Fine rice out of reach for common man
Kadapa: The price of fine quality rice has skyrocketed again in the district. Fine rice, which cost Rs 42 earlier, has risen to Rs 45 and has become...
Kadapa: The price of fine quality rice has skyrocketed again in the district. Fine rice, which cost Rs 42 earlier, has risen to Rs 45 and has become almost out of bounds for the common man. Although the price of rice was going up constantly, the government was not doing anything to regulate it or make alternative arrangements. It just opened a few counters and washed its hands off. As rainfall was scanty last year, paddy crop cultivation was affected in the KC canal area and the rice millers resorted to black marketing. Besides, due to the rise in prices of essential commodities, including vegetables, it has become very difficult for the middle classes to have two square meals a day. Even the civil supplies department has expressed its helplessness in controlling the prices. However, the rice millers said that the steep hike in the price of paddy resulted in the price rise. Last week, the price of a 50 kg bag of rice, which was Rs 2200 has now risen to Rs 2500. Similarly, the 25 kg of new variety of rice which was Rs 1000 is now Rs 1100. With the fall in paddy cultivation, the yield per hectare had also come down and the impact has been felt in the district. Now, they were forced to buy rice from Guntur and Kurnool districts. Millers said that as transport charges rose steeply to get rice from Guntur and Kurnool, and they were getting more husk in the bags than rice, they were forced to increase the prices of fine rice. They said the farmers themselves were selling paddy of 10 bags for Rs 20,000 and this has affected the prices of rice too. In the Kadapa city, five lorries of rice is required every day and in the entire district, nearly 20 lorries worth of rice are needed. Earlier, when the price of rice has skyrocketed, the district civil supplies department opened some counters and sold fine rice for Rs 30. Three counters were opened in the city. However, the people stopped buying this rice as there was no quality and it tasted very bad. The officials just opened some counters and washed their hands off without bothering to find out whether the rice was of fine quality or not. The people alleged that even the millers were selling them adulterated or poor quality rice. They demanded raids on the millers' godowns and confiscate the rice which was hoarded there to create artificial scarcity.