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Home > News > India News > Article > Maharashtra Onion traders in Nashik go on indefinite strike suspend auctions minister warns action

Maharashtra: Onion traders in Nashik go on indefinite strike, suspend auctions; minister warns action

Updated on: 20 September,2023 07:02 PM IST  |  Nashik
mid-day online correspondent |

An office-bearer of the Nashik District Onion Traders Association said they are protesting against the govt's recent move to increase export duty on onions

Maharashtra: Onion traders in Nashik go on indefinite strike, suspend auctions; minister warns action

Representational Pic/File

Onion traders in Maharashtra's Nashik district on Wednesday said that they suspended auctions in all agriculture produce market committees in Nashik and the protest will continue indefinitely, a development raising the fear of shortage of the kitchen staple in retail markets and hike in prices, reported the PTI.


According to the news agency, an office-bearer of the Nashik District Onion Traders Association (NDOTA) said they are protesting against the Union government's recent move to increase export duty on onions up to 40 per cent, which will remain in force till December 31.


"In protest against the export duty hike decision, we have decided to shut the auction of onions in all APMCs in the district indefinitely. This (export duty hike) decision of the Centre will not only make export of onions difficult but it will also affect the onions in transit, causing huge loss to farmers," the office-bearer said.


The PTI reported that while speaking on the issue, Maharashtra marketing minister Abdul Sattar said that observing a bandh (shutting auctions of onions) is not right.

"Secretaries in the departments of cooperation and marketing will discuss the action to be taken as per rules and Nashik district collector will take the necessary action," he said on the sidelines of an event.

Notably, auctions of onions remained closed at most of the APMCs in Nashik district, including at Lasalgaon, the largest wholesale onion market in India, on August 20.

That protest was withdrawn after the intervention of Union minister Bharti Pawar, who hails from Nashik district.

Last month, traders had alleged the Central government failed to keep the assurance that NAFED would purchase onions from farmers. They had also claimed that onion producers received less price in auctions than the one announced by the government at Rs 2,410 per quintal.

"We had given time till September 19 to the government to find a solution to our demands. But as our demands are not agreed to yet, we have decided to shut the auction of onions indefinitely," the office-bearer said.

The other demands raised by traders include the cancellation of export duty on onions, a 50 per cent reduction in market fees, participation by the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) and National Cooperative Consumers' Federation of India (NCCF) in auctions and a 50 per cent subsidy in transport of onions.

Accordingly, onion auctions did not take place in all APMCs in Nashik district on Wednesday including in the Lasalgaon APMC. No onions arrived at APMCs, sources said.

On Monday, 18,072 quintals of onions were auctioned at Lasalgaon APMC at the average rate of Rs 2,051 per quintal. Currently, only summer onions are available in the market. APMCs remained closed on Tuesday on account of Ganesh Chaturthi.

(with PTI inputs)

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