Residents of Mumbai, Navi Mumbai and Thane, will have to spend more money on vegetables, groceries, spices and fruits from tomorrow as about 5,000 traders from the Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC) market in Sanpada, Navi Mumbai, are going on ‘mass leave’ in response to the state government’s amendments to the APMC Act.
The mass leave will be on till the state government takes a proper decision, says a trader. Pic/Sneha Kharabe
The traders will be on leave from Tuesday and will not purchase any commodities from the farmer. This will lead to a skewed ratio in the demand and the goods available with retailers and local shop owners. “The prices can jump by at least 30 per cent of the current rate which is already steep,” said an APMC trader.
Normally fruits, vegetables, onions, potatoes, spices and groceries are first brought to the APMC market and sold to retailers and local markets. On July 5, the government came up with an amendment stating that the traders who sell inside the market should pay the tax, pay the mathadi kamgar, and also commission to the APMC for the commodities. But a trader can also sell the same product outside the APMC market and doesn’t have to pay any such charges.
Balkrishna Shinde, an APMC fruit trader, said, “If the traders are on leave within two days the prices will sky rocket as people will not get supply according to their demand.”
Shinde said the amendment was implemented from Saturday. “We have to pay all taxes, APMC commission, and the mathadi kamgar and later look after the profit. The traders selling outside can only make profit. Why will people buy from us if what we are selling at Rs 100, is sold at Rs 80 to Rs 90 outside? The amendment should be equal,” added Shinde.
VS Rathod, Deputy Secretary, vegetable market, said that there are 1,500 traders in this market who all purchase from the farmers, and sell in the market at the wholesale rate. “We will be on leave from Tuesday. No commodities will be purchased from the farmers and hence the market will not fulfill the demand of the retailers. The government should look into the situation and till they take a proper decision we will be on leave. If this continues, the commodities in the market will decrease and the prices will keep increasing.”