IT raids on onion traders in Maharashtra
I-T raids on onion traders in MaharashtraBy Jayashree Bhosale, ET Bureau|Updated: Sep 15, 2017, 11.45 AM IST Income tax authorities on Thursday raided the properties of some big onion traders at Lasalgaon and Pimpalgaon in Maharashtra, scrutinising documents related to sales in the previous month when prices had vaulted.
Agitated with the move, farmers stopped auctions as prices crashed by 30 per centRs After remaining subdued for over a year, onion prices had increased sharply in August, taking retail prices to Rs 50/kg. The price rise was attributed to speculation as the country had sufficient stock of onions.
Sources said the premises of eight or nine traders from Nashik district, who account for 30-40 per cent of the onion trade in the district, were checked by I-T officials. The scrutiny, being carried out at the offices, godowns and warehouses of traders, will be on for one or two more days, they said. Farmers are worried that the action may lead to a fall in onion prices, just when the kharif crop i s ready to come to markets.
Spot wholesale onion prices crashed from Rs 14/kg to Rs 9/kg on news of the raids.
âAt present, onion wholesale prices are ruling at around Rs 9kg, which is not a high rate considering farmers have been carrying this stock for six months now and have had about 50 per cent losses due to rotting,â said Jayadatta Holkar, chairman of Lasalgaon Agricultural Produce Market Committee.Market representatives say that if the government wanted to check speculation, they should have raided when prices were Rs 30kg.
âRaids at this time can pull the rates down when farmers still have huge stocks and the new crop will start arriving after Dussehra,''said Holkar.
Arrival of the kharif crop has started on a small scale in Maharashtra, Karnataka and other states. Read more onstocksOnionNewsmarketsMaharashtraKarnatakaIncome Tax
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