Vegetable prices soar across India after fuel price hike

      Vegetable prices have soared across the country on the heels of the much-decried hike in fuel prices. The petroleum price hike has added to the consumers' and distributors' agony as transporters bringing in vegetables from other states, have increased their fares, affecting the cost of the vegetables in turn. "It depends on the rains. If there is too much rain, the vegetables will rot. And therefore the supply is low, and so the prices shoot up. If the supply increases, the prices will go down," said Gangaram, a vegetable seller in Mumbai. Many consumers, left with no option, have lessened their purchases of vegetables in order to make ends meet amid the spiraling inflation. "The condition has deteriorated so much. The way the prices of vegetables have increased, there is no vegetable available for less than Rs 40- Rs 50 per kilogram. Our budget is out of balance. We have to compromise on so many things. We have to decrease the quantity of vegetables consumed and the varieties that we would buy earlier," said Rajinder Prasad Gupta, a customer in Jaipur. Consumers are urging the central government to sort out the issue at the earliest. Data released on July 8 showed the food price index rose an annual 12.63 percent in the year to June 26, slower than the previous week's 12.92 percent, largely as prices in the year-ago period were high. The fuel price index went up by 18.02 percent during the period, compared with the previous week's 12.90 percent. The index will see another jump in its next reading, with the government having raised fuel prices from June 26. The primary articles index rose by 16.08 percent, compared with 14.75 percent in the previous week.

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