Retail inflation for farm and rural workers rose to 2.94 per cent and 3.12 per cent, respectively, in May as certain food items turned costlier.
The inflation rates in April had stood at 2.66 per cent and 2.94 per cent, respectively.
“Point-to-point rate of inflation based on the CPI-AL (Consumer Price Index for Agricultural Labourers) and CPI-RL (Consumer Price Index for Rural Labourers) stood at 2.94 per cent and 3.12 per cent in May 2021,” the labour ministry said in a statement.
It added that the inflation rates based on CPI-AL and CPI-RL in April 2021 had stood at 2.66 per cent and 2.94 per cent, respectively; and 8.40 per cent and 8.12 per cent during May 2020.
Food inflation based on CPI-AL and CPI-RL stood at 1.54 per cent and 1.73 per cent, respectively, during May 2021. They had stood at 1.24 per cent and 1.54 per cent, respectively, in April 2021; and 10.40 per cent and 10.21 per cent in May last year.
All-India CPI-AL and CPI-RL for May this year rose eight notch each to 1,049 and 1,057 points, respectively.
The major contribution towards the rise in general index of agricultural labourers and rural labourers came from food, with (+) 6.67 points and (+) 6.16 points, respectively. This was mainly due to a rise in prices of wheat atta, meat goat, fish fresh, mustard oil, groundnut oil, pulses, and vegetables and fruits.
The rise and fall in the index varied from state to state.
In the case of agricultural labourers, it recorded an increase of 1-17 points in 18 states and a decrease of 2-3 points in Jammu & Kashmir and Tripura, respectively. Tamil Nadu, with 1,247 points, topped the index table; whereas Himachal Pradesh, with 815 points, stood at the bottom.
In the case of rural labourers, it recorded an increase of 1-14 points in 18 states and a decrease of two points each in Tamil Nadu and Tripura. Tamil Nadu, with 1,231 points, topped the index table; whereas Bihar, with 855 points, stood at the bottom.
Among states, the highest increase in the CPI-AL was experienced by Maharashtra (+17 points). For CPI-RL, the highest rise was experienced by Maharashtra and Jammu & Kashmir (+14 points each).
The rise was mainly due to a rise in the prices of rice, wheat-atta, jowar, pulses, mustard oil, groundnut oil, vegetables and fruits, fish fresh/dry, meat goat, milk, sugar, gur, shirting cloth cotton (mill), and kerosene oil.
On the contrary, the highest decrease in the CPI-AL was experienced by Tripura (-3 points); and for CPI-RL, it was experienced by Tamil Nadu and Tripura (-2 points each). The fall was mainly due to a decrease in the prices of rice, onion, fish fresh, chillies green and turmeric.
Labour Mininster Santosh Gangwar said in the statement, “The increase in CPI-AL and CPI-RL will have a positive impact on the income of the workers engaged in agricultural and rural sector by way of increased wages.”
Labour Bureau Director General D P S Negi stated, “The increase in general index of agricultural labourers and rural labourers is mainly on account of an increase in the prices of wheat atta, meat goat, fish fresh, mustard oil, groundnut oil, pulses, vegetables and fruits, medicine, firewood and kerosene.”
Negi further elaborated that “like other price indices, CPI-AL and CPI-RL also observed an increase in inflation during the month”.