New Delhi: Government has no plans to release wheat and other commodities in the open market despite the reported 5% price hike, which is also not justified, a top government official said.
“We have no immediate plans to sell anything in the open market, but that again is for the Food Ministry look into. The hike is not significant and there are enough stocks in the country today anyway. I don’t see any real justification for rise in price,” Union Cabinet Secretary K. M. Chandrasekhar said on the sidelines of seminar here on Friday.
Quizzed, whether government plans to release wheat in the open market in view of the spurt in demand and prices during festival season, Chandrasekhar said that public distribution (PDS) system becomes active during such events and they try to ensure that there are lots of outlets to supply essential commodities.
“The prices of pulses too have been reasonably steady in the last few days and not going up and lot of imports have taken place. So prices are holding. If the prices are maintained at reasonable levels, it may not be necessary for the government to intervene, but if the prices show a tendency to go up, we will,” said Chandrasekhar.
He pointed that if one were to look at the international market and compare India, it is like an oasis as far as prices of wheat are concerned as they have been maintained well within the limit.
The Cabinet secretary also trashed reports of government planning to import duty free wheat flour. “There is no such decision at present, but every issue it will depend on prices. If they are maintained, government will not interfere”.