Wholesalers increased the rates by Rs12/litre on the already elevated price of Rs84 against the official rate of Rs70
KARACHI: The Karachi Dairy Farmers Association and milk wholesalers made sure not to miss the opportunity, as traditionally and willfully done in the past, of unlawfully increasing the rates of fresh milk by approximately Rs12 a litre on the already elevated price of Rs84 against the official rate of Rs70. Prior to the additional increase, the price of milk was set at Rs80. Woefully, the competent authority chose to remain silent upon the unauthorised price increase, taking no action whatsover.
In the wake of the stringent action taken by the commissioner of Karachi on the additional price increase, milk sellers divided over the price issue, with some selling milk at a rate of between Rs92 and Rs95 a kilogramme, while a few sold it at a rate between Rs82 and Rs84 a kilogramme. However, upon persistent follow-up by the deputy commissioners and assistant commissioners concerned, milk is now being sold at the initial increased rate of between Rs80 and Rs84 — which is still not the official rate, i.e., Rs70 a kilogramme. The authorities concerned are requested to kindly ensure that milk is sold at its official price.
It is also requested that stern action be taken against profiteers who sell milk at exorbitant prices, making it difficult for many people to afford it in an already inflation-ridden economy. The commissioner of Karachi should take all necessary measures to ensure that nobody, unofficially and arbitrarily, increases the price of this essential commodity at their own will.
It has been observed in the past that the Karachi Milk Retailers Association increases the rate of milk on the pretext of rising fuel prices. However, now that fuel prices are on a downward trend and are at their lowest in the past nine months, there is no justification in increasing the price of milk.
Notably, tea stalls and restaurants have increased the price of tea due to milk being more expensive. A cup of regular tea now costs Rs15 and Rs25 to Rs30 for a cup of doodh patti. Yoghurt prices should also be published for citizens’ awareness as it has been found that there is a huge difference between the prices of milk and yoghurt.
A mechanism needs to be devised for preventing the sale of impure and injurious-to-health milk. Effective measures need to be implemented to ensure that all milk that is sold commercially is fit for human consumption. To accomplish this task, a food authority must be established in Karachi to certify the quality of essential food items.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 30th, 2015.
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