With onion price rising almost by the day now, many consumers have expressed serious concerns and are considering cooking food without the essential spice.
While the government is pledging to take action against perpetrators behind such price hike, traders dealing with spices said that there is no stopping such price hike in the near future.
They speculate that price of onion would continue to rise in absence of sufficient supply in the main wholesale markets.
On the other hand, reports say that a huge quantities of the recently imported onions stored at Khatunganj in Chittagong are rotting and spreading stench.
Meanwhile, mobile courts have launched a campaign against the price hike and penalised many for charging prices more than it is supposed to be. But even then, there is no sign of any reduction in prices.
Concerned people said that rotten onions in Khatunganj gave rise to a lot of criticism. Khatunganj traders said these onions have been stocked for a long time that is why they have perished. Besides, some traders are believed to have stockpiled onion now in anticipation of further rise in the prices.
On Friday night, when visiting Khatunganj, it was found that anonymous people had discarded rotten onions by the side of Chaktai canal. Many of the lower income people have preferred buying onions which are less rotten for their use.
A local businessman Khalil Ullah said that “They have been rotting for a long time. However, he could not give any information on who owns the onions.”
Chaktai area businessman Abul Hashem said, in the current situation, there is not much harm to the traders if the onion is rotting away in this manner. They will keep increasing the price of onions to counter the loss of the rotting onions. Now the rotten onions are coming out every day.
Protests-Human chain: Meanwhile, the Gaibandha District Committee of the Communist Party of Bangladesh held a protest march and rally in Gaibandha on Saturday afternoon to protest the onion price rise. The procession started from the CPB's district office premises at Railway No. 1 at around 12pm and circled the main road of the city. For the same reason human bonding program has been observed in Rajshahi city. The Bangladesh Workers Party organized a Rajshahi Metropolitan Branch on Saturday demanding to strengthen market monitoring from the human chain program at Zero Point in the city.
Campaign: In Barishal wholesale market, onions (Myanmar) are selling at the rate of Tk 220 per kg and in the retail market from Tk 240 to 250. Public is upset about this. In order to keep prices stable, the district administration has operated a mobile court in Barishal at Mokam Peyajpotti. The mobile court, headed by Executive Magistrate Rasel Iqbal, inspected and checked the onion warehouses vouchers on various grounds. Due to inconsistency in the price list, Bikrampur Chamber of Commerce was fined Tk 5,000.
On the other hand, the onion market in is highly unstable in Kushtia due to the campaign of the SP have decreased somewhat. Kushtia SP SM Tanvir Arafat went to the field to monitor the onion prices in the city municipal market yesterday morning. Immediately onion prices fell by Tk 40 to Tk 50 per kg.
On the same day, in Khulna, a mobile court fined a local businessman named Hazrat Ali Tk 1 lakh for selling onion at extra price. The raid was carried out in the city's Baro Bazar.