In a welcome move, the Centre on Tuesday said the onions will now be sold for Rs 22 per kg as it has imported around 18 tonnes of kitchen staple. The announcement came a day after government data revealed that retail inflation rose to about five-and-half year high of 7.35 per cent in December 2019, surpassing the RBI’s comfort level.
“Around 18,000-ton onion has been imported now, but even after all the efforts, only 2000 tonnes onion has been sold. We are providing onions at Rs 22/kg now,” news agency ANI quoted Ram Vilas Paswan, Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, as saying.
Last year, onion prices in most cities, were ruling at Rs 100/kg. “Imported onions have started arriving. About 1,160 tonne has reached India. Additional 10,560 tonne of shipments are expected to arrive in the next 3-4 days,” a senior ministry official had said. Both red and yellow onions were imported from Turkey, Egypt and Afghanistan. The shipments are landing at Mumbai port, the official had said in December.
The minister further said the Centre is offering imported onions at an average landed cost of Rs 55 per kg and also bearing the entire transportation cost. Despite all, the state governments are not coming forward to buy and retail it.