Stocks available with the retailers and wholesalers have made it possible to meet the demands. However, if the strike continues till January 12, it will worsen the situation.
The Bangalore Wholesale Foodgrains and Pulses Merchants’ Association President Ramesh Chandra Lahoti said, the yard recorded transaction worth Rs 10 crore a day and it has come to a near standstill. “We suffer a loss of daily profit upto Rs 10 lakh and the State government also suffers loss due to downturn in collection of VAT and entry tax,” he said.
A few tempos and lorries laden with sacks of onions and potatoes were seen leaving the yard. Only essential commodities are being dispatched. However, a lorry owner had taken risk to pay an additional Rs 5,000 for transporting sugar cane from Belgaum to Bangalore, a trader pointed out.
The traders have consensus over the truckers’ demand for reduction in diesel prices and they urge the government concede to the demand. They said the existing stock of pulses and food grains may enable them to cope for the next ten days. However, if the agitation is not called off by January 12, it will be very difficult to supply the commodities.
Besides, prices may rise due to shortage in supply making it difficult for the public during Makara Sankranti, said Shiv Kumar Sharma of S K Enterprises. “Pulses have to come from Gujarat and if the strike persists, it will affect public.” Kailash Rawal of ‘Mangaldeep’, a store that sells food grains and pulses to retailers, said that he had already increased the price by Rs two a kg.