Sugar crisis again
A number of retailers of Karwan Bazar kitchen market in the capital yesterday complained to a parliamentary body that dealers are not supplying them sugar for sale.
However, instead of paying heed to the complaint, the delegation of the parliamentary body on commerce ministry observed that it's "nothing unusual" and assured them of sugar supply soon.
The delegation was comprised of business leaders, high officials of the commerce ministry and members of the law-enforcement agencies.
Meanwhile, a retailer of Mohammadpur Town Hall kitchen market was seen selling sugar on condition that consumers would have to buy one or two more commodities from him.
Consumer Shafique Rahman, an artist of Bangladesh Shilpokola Academy, rushed to the four-member delegation to inform them the matter. But the delegates got into their respective vehicles by that time and left the market.
Several retailers in these two major kitchen markets were also seen selling gram (chhola), a widely used commodity for Iftar item, at Tk 70-90 per kilogram. The price was much higher than the government-fixed price of Tk 63-65 per kg.
The delegation, however, after their one-and-a-half-hour visit to the two markets found an overall "satisfactory" situation.
Led by ABM Abul Qasem, chief of the parliamentary standing committee on commerce ministry, the delegation visited the two kitchen markets to observe prices of essentials at the beginning of Ramadan.
The delegates told reporters that they are "quite satisfied" with the prices of essentials as sugar, gram and oil are "available" in the markets and are selling at "normal" prices.
The delegation talked to sellers of five to six grocery stores situated by the main walkway but didn't enter the main markets.
Helal Uddin, president of Dhaka Shop Owners Association and director of Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industries, and others accompanying the delegation asked the sellers whether prices of daily commodities were being sold as per the list hung in their respective shops.
The sellers were seen replying promptly in the positive.
Helal and others were seen walking away when some retailers tried to draw their attention about sugar crisis. The delegation also did not find time to pay heed to different consumers' complaints.
In Chittagong, the wholesale and retail markets are again facing crisis of sugar for the last few days due to a supply shortfall.
Many wholesalers at the two big wholesale points of the city markets were found selling sugar at Tk 72-73 per kg.