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» » News18 Shorts

Onion price rise not due to hoarding: Traders

Dec 25, 2010 09:32 AM IST India India

New Delhi: Onion prices have started to come down after the freak surge earlier in the week. While many were blaming hoarding as the cause for the sudden spurt in price rise, CNN-IBN did a reality check and found that a day after the raids across New Delhi, traders are refraining from controversy and treading very cautiously over any question of hoarding.

Following the raids on Thursday, wholesale prices of onion fell to Rs 2,500 per quintal to Rs 6,200 per quintal in a single day. While some people blamed unseasonal rains for the price rise and exports, most fingers pointed towards a possible onion mafia.

National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Managing Director Sanjeev Chopra declined to comment when asked about cartels involved in pushing up onion prices.

So CNN-IBN decided to try and explore the possible onion cartel responsible for pushing up prices.

The CNN-IBN team visited all the three major vegetable mandis in the capital - Azadpur, Ghazipur and Okhla. But it was just one day after authorities had raided the markets. We found that there were a bunch of very cautious traders who had possibly clammed up.

At Azadpur Mandi, the biggest wholesale vegetable market in the capital, it was almost like the traders had never even heard of hoarding incidents in the past.

One trader claimed that price rise was the result of rivalry and declined to say anything about hoarding. One trader said that rise in the prices of onions was not because of hoarding.

At the Okhla mandi it was the same story with the traders blaming the media for the panic

"Price rise happened because of media. There is no hoarding," said a trader.

The situation was no different at Ghazipur mandi.

So were these reactions the consequences of the raid conducted across the capital? Or was it the constant media glare that has got a sense of caution among traders?

The bottom line is that prices are coming down, with onions currently selling at Rs 60 a kilo. It seems everyone is trading and treading very carefully. But had the government woken up early the onion crisis could have been avoided.

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