Rawalpindi - While taking full advantage of ineffective price checking mechanism by the district government, the prices of meat, mutton, chicken, vegetables and all other essential food items have been increased significantly ahead of Eid Ul Fitr in almost all the areas.

The  price of mutton is being charged at Rs 1600-2000 by the meat shops, while beef  with and without bones is being charged by  majority of butchers at  Rs 800 to  Rs 859 per kg  against the fixed prices of  Rs 900 for mutton per Kg and  beef at Rs 650-700  per Kg.   The milkmen have also jacked up prices of milk and yogurt by Rs 20 to 30 per kg/litre. The price of milk is being charged at Rs 140 per litre and yogurt at Rs150 per Kg which is much higher than the fixed price list issued by the district government.

The vendors and shopkeepers have also raised prices of onion, tomato, green chillies, potatoes, green coriander, ginger, garlic, cucumber, peas and other vegetables and fruits up to 200 percent, putting the consumers into huge troubles on eve of Eid Ul Fitr.

According to survey conducted by The Nation on Monday, the butchers, milkmen, shopkeepers and vendors have increased prices of meat, mutton, milk, yogurt, potato, tomato, onion and other essential food items in areas of Adiala Road, Bakra Mandi, Dhamial Road, Chakri Road, Baraf Khana, Dhoke Syedan, Chungi Number 22, Tench Bhatta, Chakra, Misrial Road, Peshawar Road, IJP Road, Pirwadhai, Commercial Market, Dhoke Kala Khan, Double Road, Shakrial and suburbs.

Interestingly, the deputy commissioner and his brigade of special price magistrates are not taking any action against the profiteers in open markets ahead of Eid Ul Fitr.

Babar Hussain, a customer at Adiala Road, told The Nation that the meat and chicken shops merchants   are heavily overcharging the customers ahead of Eid Ul Fitr, while the government is seemed to be in deep slumber as no action is being taken against these looters.

Shopkeepers fleecing customers by defying prices of food items fixed by dist govt

He said butchers are selling mutton at Rs 1600-2000 instead of Rs 900, the price fixed by district government. “It is difficult for a common man to buy mutton for his children on such a high price on eve of Eid,” he said.

The government has left consumers at mercy of traders of meat and mutton and other vendors who are selling the commodities on high prices, said Amir Salim, another consumer.

He said that some retailers have pushed up prices of meat by Rs 200 to 300 per kg in Tench Bhatta.

Many other customers lodged complaints that the vegetable sellers and vendors are charging Rs 200 to 250 against 1 kg tomatoes while onion and potatoes are being charged at Rs 100 and Rs 70 per kg respectively.

They said that the prices of ginger, garlic, green chillies, mint, cucumber and chicken have also been raised in almost all the areas of Rawalpindi.

They demanded of the district administration to initiate action against the profiteers and looters to provide relief to poverty stricken masses.

The commissioner Rawalpindi division, and the deputy commissioner, district Rawalpindi were not available for their comments over the looting spree launched by the shopkeepers, vendors and butchers.