Onions all set to make you cry again

Owing to the Centre's decision to revoke the ban on export of onions and erratic monsoon, prices are geared to skyrocket to Rs 60-100/kg in the coming months

One may have to shell out anywhere between Rs 60 to 100 for a kilo of onions in the near future as the central government revoked the ban on the export of onions yesterday.

The government had banned exports just 11 days ago, on September 9, to check rising onion prices in the country.

Tearing up: According to traders, the Centre's decision to revoke the
ban on exports of onions coupled with irregular showers is going to make
the price of onions shoot up. PIC/SAURABH KATKURWAR

The ban on the export of onions had an immediate impact on the prices reducing them by Rs 2-3 per kg. However, following the fierce protests by the state farmers, the government revoked the ban.
Arun Kumar, a wholesale trader at the Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) market said, "After the Centre imposed the ban on the export of onions, prices fell by Rs 3 for a 10-kg bag. However, prices saw an increase of Rs 2-5 when there was less supply owing to the farmers' protests. Following the decision of the government to revoke the ban, most traders will opt to export onions as it is more profitable and the supply of onions in the local markers will reduce, causing a hike in prices in the months to come.

"The onion prices are expected to touch Rs 40 per kg in the wholesale market by the end of the next month, whereas an end customer will have to shell out at least Rs 60 per kg."

Rain plays spoilsport
And it's not just the revoking of the ban that will make prices to skyrocket.

According to traders, less and irregular rain will further fuel the price hike. Further explaining, Krishna Patil from the APMC market said, "This year onion growing areas such as Lasangaon, Chakan, Mansar have seen less and irregular showers that will definitely affect the next crop of onions. The old stock of onions will be over by the end of October and owing to the irregular rain there will be a smaller harvest further increasing the price of onions."

And although the cancellation of the ban brought a smile on the faces of onion farmers and traders, the common man has not welcomed the decision. Vinay Dhoke, an employee with a private firm, said, "Prices of essential commodities have skyrocketed. We cannot afford an increase in prices now. The government should not have lifted the ban on the export of onions.

How can the government give in to the demands of a few onion traders over the interest of one billion people in the country?"

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