Quick Edit | No more tears

Quick Edit | No more tears

Nothing causes more lachrymation in the government than the high price of onions. A fortnight ago, amid reports of shortages and crop damage, exports were banned. Soon enough, farmers began holding back their produce and the ban did not prevent the creeping hardening in prices.

On Wednesday, farmers began bringing back their output to markets after the government revoked the ban. Collective might, it seemed, had forced the government to back off.

That may not be entirely true. For the first time in a long while, the government has been in the front of a learning curve. Instead of a politically damaging brawl with farmers, it allowed exports, but insisted on a high minimum export price for onions, effectively ensuring that exports remain infeasible.

This is in the interest of all consumers. Such silent tactics have much to recommend them.