NEW DELHI: Rattled by rising prices of essential commodities, including potatoes and onions in the national capital, the Ministry of Home Affairs blamed the previous UPA Government for the spiralling prices of essential commodities, saying the UPA-II had derailed the economy and it would take some time to bring it back on track.
“UPA-II derailed our country’s economy. Now it will take some time to bring it on track. We are confident of doing so and committed to ensure that prices do not rise,” Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said.
Singh, who held a high level meeting with Delhi’s Lt Governor Najeeb Jung and senior officials of the MHA on Thursday, announced a slew of measures to check prices of onions and potatoes in Delhi, which at present is administratively controlled by the MHA, due to the President’s Rule in the State.
Singh has issued an instruction to finalise the action plan for procurement of onions from July 15 to September 15, which happens to be the lean period for availability of onions.
“We have taken several steps. As of now there are 60 mobile vans to sell onions and potatoes, which we will increase to 200 mobile vans by next week. Similarly 200 government premises have been identified to sell onions and potatoes in the next two weeks. Currently sales have begun from 40 government premises,” Singh said.
Prices of onions have increased to over `30 per kg in the retail market in Delhi, as against `21 per kg last month, and potatoes are being sold for `28 per kg as against `22.
The Home Minister also said that as a drive against hoarding by traders, 540 raids were conducted by the Delhi Administration on July 1 and in the past month, at least 1,082 premises have been raided by the authorities.
The MHA will also take up the matter with the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation (NAFED) for procuring onions and potatoes for the Delhi Government at the best possible rates.
“An awareness campaign will also be launched for the general public to procure potatoes and onions from government shops and government-run mobile vans,” he added.