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Fruits and vegetables out of reach of ‘Aam Aadami’ after floods

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 By CJ Nishant Tripathi

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The consequences of the floods that ravaged Jammu and Kashmir have started to show as the waters settled in, leaving behind the scars that will take their time to heal. The immediate destruction of land and infrastructure that has been caused is still not clear when the consequential damage starts to follow and further add to the difficulties of the recovering victims. Not just the direct sufferers take the pain, but the destruction magnifies as it spreads through each and every part of the affected society.

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While people are standing in line for the rescue where the floods have been severe and those who have been rescued to the make shift temporary refuges still face shortage of necessities like food and drinking water, the common man suffers the shortage of food on his plate in the flood safe areas as the food supply is heavily affected. Due to the isolation of the state from the rest of the country owing to the severe damage cause to the highways as the floods raged, this stopped many trucks and load carriers to enter into or move out of the city and the city has started to starve for essentials like fruits and vegetables turning into the unavailability to the mouth plate of the common man.

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The stock of these essentials that was available in the market has also been affected badly and destroyed severely because of the flood and incessant rains and what is left is being hoarded or distributed at a price over 200 percent of their otherwise rates. Let’s take a look at the prices of a few commodities available at Narwal Mandi on whole sale:

Commodity                        Normal Price                      Today’s Price

Cabbage:                             Rs. 5-10/kg                          Rs.20-25/kg

Radish:                                 Rs. 30/kg                              Rs. 60/kg

Coriander:                           Rs. 20-30/kg                       Rs. 100-120/kg

Peas:                                     Rs.20-30/kg                        Rs.80-100/kg

Apple:                                   Rs.300-400/kg                    Rs. 1000/kg

Tomato:                               Rs.40/kg                               No change

As we can see, despite tomatoes, every other article is being sold at a price double its normal price in the whole sale market which would in turn reflect in their retail prices and hence burning a deep hole in the pockets of the ‘aam aadami’. The supply of these articles have totally stopped and the stock with the whole salers at the mandi has also been affected. Apples have borne the severe damage as most of the stock has rotten up or is unsaleable. The one which is left is being sold at the highest of the prices, ever. When asked about these ultra-price hikes, they argued that how else they would make up for the loss of those. And only because of these price hikes that their sale has also decreased.

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While we sit and watch the state and center divert all their energy and attention in aiding the flood victims, it’s only a matter of time when they would have to deal with these tailing consequences and address them so as to overcome the destruction these floods have caused, forever marking an inerasable stain in the history of Jammu and Kashmir.

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