The reality of Costly Tomato – By Sanjay Chaturvedi

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Vegetable prices seem to be the only parameter set for evaluation of inflation. It

is important too because while many products do not have a large impact on our

day to day budget, particularly the lower and the medium section of the society, to

the extent the vegetables have. But are the media reports totally true and relate to

every part of the country? Since, it is the matter of grave concerns for most of the

masses no body take pains to check the claims.

In order to check the ground realities I went to the local mandi at Faridabad a

couple of days back. Undoubtedly the rates were found to be souring high. But the

interesting fact is that the rates which we all assume to be all over the country or at

least in NCR are not the ground realities. To have an idea I am just discussing the

rates of certain vegetable. To start with let’s talk about tomato because tomato is

playing the role for BJP what onion played for Congress once. While the TV channels

say that tomato is in the range of Rs.90 to 100 for a kilogram, I got the same easily

at half the price, i.e. Rs.50 per kilogram, that too without any negotiation. Further,

the rate of tomato was Rs.40 per kg at some other place but the quality was not

that good as it was of the dearer one.

Another important ingredient every kitchen needs is the potato, were available

at Rs.25/=. This is the price at which we get potato at most of the times through

the year. To my surprise ladyfinger was available at Rs.10 per kg. Just to check

whether it is of right quality I purchased the same, which was certified by the

experts at home as the right quality. The same ladyfinger was also available at the

double price of Rs.20 per kg. at some other vendors.

Lemon was comparatively a consoling factor at Rs.40 per kg, which is rarely found

these days. The cauliflower, being a VIP vegetable these days was off course

available at Rs.100 per kg.

With this discussion my intention is not to prove any reports wrong but the idea

is to understand the impact of the ‘Capital affect’. Since most of the channels and

national papers talk of Delhi only, the people from other towns need to check the

ground realities before reacting with a panic. I am not sure what would be the

prices in the coming days.

A few days ago, one of my relatives underlined a fact which none of us realise.

While talking about the water logging he said, “It is quiet surprising that people

all through the country know the spots of water-logging in Delhi because what we

call as ‘National News’ is more or less ‘Capital news’. Even the national newspapers

have more than enough of news from Delhi alone. It is also a fact that what the

news from country minus Delhi takes place is even less than the news of sports

and the news form rest of the world are covered. Even the area in the immediate

vicinity of Delhi and part of NCR are not given that much of coverage that they

need. The news from Faridabad, Karnal, Panipat, Palwal and Hodal are so rare that

anyone can count the same on fingers, talking on the annual basis. Hence, the

national news is more of capital news and the viewers must get influenced only

after knowing the ground realities.

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