Govt to bring surprise inspections to check hoarding, black marketing

By PK Manikandan

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Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Food and Public Distribution Department has introduced proposals to curtail the price hike of provisions, including rice. In a meeting held on Thursday under Minister GR Anil, the department decided to intensify the functioning of price surveillance committees led by the district collectors.

The special squads of the Legal Metrology Department will conduct surprise inspections. The officials informed Mathrubhumi that the department will check if black marketing or illegal hoarding has led to the current surge in the market price of essential food items.

Required actions were taken via Supplycos and Maveli stores to control the price hike, reported the department. However, the state government revealed its limitations in intervening in the market and controlling the cost of products directly. It can only keep a check on black marketing, hoarding and the extra charges imposed by the traders on products.

The traders have raised demands to purchase essential items from the neighbouring states to overcome the dire situation. Meanwhile, the government expects to bring the situation under control when extra quantities of rice would reach Kerala from Andhra Pradesh and other states.

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