A mobile court here on Tuesday night sentenced a wholesale trader and his two managers to one year’s imprisonment each for selling salt for unreasonable prices.
The convicts are salt dealer Hazi Gofran Ali, owner of Sonargaon Store, and his managers Lutfar Rahman and Yakub Ali in the town. Sonargaon Store is one of the biggest wholesale salt centres in the district.
On information, a special team, jointly led by Deputy Commissioner (DC) Abu Jafor and Superintendent of Police (SP) SM Rashidul Haque, raided Sonargaon Store in the town and found the convicts selling salt at higher prices by creating artificial crisis.
They were selling a sack of salt containing 50 kg at Tk 800 against Tk 500 to the retailers, said the SP.
The three were arrested and later produced before the court, led by Upazila Nirbahi Officer Joyoshree Rani Roy, which pronounced the verdict, said the police official.
Nazrul Islam, a salt retailer of Barabari Haat in Lalmonirhat Sadar, alleged that he purchased one sack of slat containing 50 kg at Tk 500 from Gofran Ali on Monday but it was sold at Tk 800 on Tuesday.
“As we purchased salt at a high rate from the dealer, we sold it at higher prices in the retail market,” said Nazrul.
Taking the advantage of rumours on the price hike of salt, Gofran was making bucks by creating artificial crisis, said another retailer Saheb Ali of Mahendranagar Bazar in the upazila.
DC Abu Jafor said there is no crisis of salt. There is huge stock of salt, so salt would be sold at reasonable prices.
The local administration and police are very much active to take stern action against anyone spreading rumours about salt, said Jafor.