Onion prices at India’s largest wholesale market for the vegetable in Maharashtra fell by 35 per cent on Thursday. The prices dropped from Rs 1,400 per quintal to Rs 900 per quintal at Lasalgaon Agriculture Produce Market Committee (LAPMC) after the Income Tax department carried out surveys and searches in the offices, godowns, and homes of seven onion traders in Nashik district, as per a Times of India report. Two of the seven traders, who were raided by the I-T department, were from Lasalgaon, said the report, quoting LAPMC’s chairman Jaydatta Holkar. According to him, those traders have the capacity to buy 30 per cent of the total arrivals in the market. This I-T dept action created panic among the onion traders, which resulted in a huge dip in wholesale onion prices. Meanwhile, the minimum wholesale prices were recorded at Rs 500, while it had reached as high as Rs 1,331 per quintal at one time during the day, said the report.
The crash in the wholesale onion prices has upset the farmers. They have since refused to sell their stock at such a low price and stopped the auction, Holkar told Times of India and added that they returned with their produce.
In past few months, the prices of onions were showing an increasing trend in Nashik and other cities across the country. Last week, the Union ministry of agriculture had asked district administration of Nashik to provide it all the details of the cost of the vegetables. In response to it, the local administration had sent the required details of arrival and prices of onions over three months at Lasalgaon APMC, added the report.