LAHORE:With the advent of the winter season, the demand for dry fruits has been increased in the city with a remarkable prices hike as compare to the previous year.
Shopkeepers of dry-fruit in various markets of the city raised the prices as there was no proper check and balance to control prices by the district administration.
The peanuts were being sold in the city market at Rs 400 which was 240 to 300 per kg last year, grams at Rs 250 to 300/kg against Rs 150 to 180 last year, varieties of Almonds at Rs 800 to 1600/kg which was Rs 600 to 1400 previous year, Pistachio with and without shell at Rs 2200 and 2600/kg respectively, varieties of walnut at Rs 600 to 1400/kg, dried-up dates at 200 to 280/kg, Pine nut (Chilgoza) at Rs. 2800 to 3400/kg, cashew at Rs 1800 to 2200,while apricots were being sold in open market at price of Rs 800 to 1000/kg.
A dry fruit shopkeeper Fareed told media that the dealers stored dry fruits, which resulted into shortage of the commodities in the market and price hike.
Another shopkeepers Akbar Shah said that due to high prices of dry-fruits, sale of these items has been decreased upto 45 percent as compare to the previous year. He said that they used to purchase these items from open market with high prices that is why he was selling these items with a low margin. He said that the daily sale was Rs 10000 to 15000 previous year which was decreased to 2000 to 6000 daily this season due to low public interest in purchase of dry-fruits.
Muhammad Zeeshan, another citizen said that the high rates have made these items out of reach of common man. He said that the shopkeepers and open market traders increased the rates for their own benefits. He complained that there was no check and balance by the district administration to control the price hike.
It is pertinent to mention here that the rates of different markets of the city were different, which shows that there is lack of price control system in the open market.