Tamil Nadu Food and Civil Supplies Minister R. Sakkrapani, who is also in charge of the Consumer Affairs, has warned the shopkeepers who have jacked up the prices of vegetables leading to panic buying from the shoppers a day ahead of total lockdown in the state.
The minister in a press release said that the government would take stringent action against the shopkeepers who hiked the prices of vegetables expecting a windfall before the lockdown.
In a statement, the minister said that it has come to the notice of the government that some shopkeepers and traders have resorted to hiking prices of vegetables. The release said that it would amount to exploiting the public during the time of a pandemic and that the government would make a case under the Essential Commodities Act against those shopkeepers who increase the prices of vegetables.
Most of the vegetables are sold for double or triple rates on Sunday as the state is bracing for total shutdown from Monday.
Potato in the retail market at Pammal in Chennai was sold at Rs 40 to Rs 50 per kilogram while its regular price in the same market is Rs 20 to Rs 25 per kilogram. Beans are sold at Rs 150 which is double its normal price of Rs 70, ladyfinger at Rs 50-60 while normally it was priced at Rs 20 per kg and onion at Rs 60 while its regular price is Rs 30 per kilogram.