800 litres of soybean oil hoarded!
When a consumer went to buy soybean oil yesterday afternoon, a grocer at Hadi's intersection in Rajshahi city denied him.
However, Md Juwel (42), owner of M/s Shahabuddin Store, found himself in trouble as the customer was a plant by the Directorate of National Consumer Right Protection (DNCRP).
Denied the oil, the customer called the DNCRP officials who were waiting nearby along with police, who rushed in to challenge Juwel and raid his warehouse near the shop.
During the raid, the DNCRP officials, headed by assistant director Hasan Maruf, found 160 pieces of 5-litre bottles of soybean oil.
Using his magistracy power, Hasan Maruf formed a mobile court and heard accounts from several customers and the grocer himself.
Juwel told the court that the soybean oil bottles were stored for his preferred buyers.
"These bottles would be sold off in a moment if I took them to the shop," Md Juwel was heard telling the court in a video clip of the raid.
The mobile court found the grocer guilty of creating artificial crisis of soybean oil and fined him Tk 50,000. The court also warned him not to commit the similar crime again.
"No trader gets to conceal so much oil for preferred buyers," Hasan Maruf said.
"Denying oil to a consumer when the trader had it in stock is a serious offence," he told The Daily Star. "The prevailing crisis of oil has been occurring due to traders like Jwel," said Hasan Marud.