RAWALPINDI: Sugar will be sold in Rawalpindi markets for Rs84 per kilogram starting today (Wednesday), following the arrival of a consignment from Karachi Port.
The provincial government released 779 metric tons of sugar to the Rawalpindi district after a month-long sugar crisis, to sell in the open market for Rs84 per kg.
Sugar was being sold for Rs110 per kg in the open market, while people were queuing outside Utility Stores to buy the commodity at a subsidised price of Rs70 per kg.
However, Utility Store outlets were only selling 5kg bags of sugar instead of 1kg packs.
Additional Deputy Commissioner General Zaheer Anwar Jappa told Dawn that sugar prices would gradually decline in the open market now that imported sugar from Karachi has reached the city and distribution to vendors has begun.
He said the district’s requirement was 150 metric tons per week, so 779 metric tons would be more than enough. He added that the district administration would check that sugar is being sold for Rs84 per kg.
Mr Jappa added that sugarcane crushing season would begin on Nov 10, after which more sugar would reach the market soon. He said the government has imported sugar, which will be enough for some months.
Consumers can register complaints if sugar is not being sold at the price determined by the administration, he said, adding that the government would ensure that all the shopkeepers sell sugar at the fixed price.
Deputy Commissioner retired Capt Anwarul Haq said that price magistrates in the district raided 769 shops and fined 122 shopkeepers Rs250,000 for overcharging.
He directed price magistrates to speed up the drive against the price hike and overcharging for edibles in the district. He said any shopkeeper found to be overcharging would face cases and would be sent to jail, while their shops sealed immediately.
Mr Haq also visited Lalazar Market and checked the weights and the quality and prices of food sold in various shops.