Bhubaneswar: Farmers have suffered huge to damage to crops due to unseasonal rains and cyclones hitting Odisha. So the vegetable prices in the Odisha capital Bhubaneswar have nearly doubled since last week burning a hole in the common man’s pocket ahead of festive season.
As per sources, prices of essential vegetables such as onion, tomato and brinjal have shown a 50 per cent jump in prices since last week. Onion which was being sold at Rs 20-30 per kilogram is now being fetching a price of Rs 40-50 per kg. Similarly tomatoes which earlier cost Rs 20-30 per kg are now being sold at Rs 50-60 per kg. Brinjal, another common vegetable is now available at Rs 50-60 a kg in the retail markets of the state capital as against Rs 30-40 per kg a couple of days back.
“Rains have continued in most part of the state until October. Moreover, the recently occurred ‘Cyclone Gulab’ has also caused heavy damages to the standing crops. As a result most of the vegetables are being procured from other states such as Chattisgarh, West Bengal and Karnataka. So the prices have gone up,” said Sameet Nanda, a trader at Unit-II market here.
Odisha this year received around 385mm of rainfall last month marking it the wettest September in last 14 years. “With over dependency on other states to meet the demand and lack of supply from local markets traders have been forced to incur heavy transportation costs. The burden of the added expenses has been passed on to the customers,” Nanda added.
Only prices of locally grown cauliflowers have remained stagnant at Rs 40-50 per piece. Prices of other vegetables have also shown an upward trend. While the cost of ridge gourd has doubled from Rs 40 to Rs 80 a kg, okra (ladyfinger) has jumped from Rs 40 to Rs 60 per kg. Similarly, the price of beans has seen a sharp increase from Rs 80 per kg to Rs 120 per kg since last week.
“It has become incredibly hard to manage our budget in such a situation. The rise in prices during festival seasons with holidays around the corner is a big concern. We have friends and relatives visiting us and such high prices are making huge dents in our pockets,” said Neelima Mishra, a homemaker here.