India’s food inflation has got the central government in a panic. Food inflation slowed to 16.91% from earlier 18.32%, but vegetable prices and those of essential commodities are on the rise.And there’s a problem that’s impervious to government efforts.
A brutal cold wave that killed 129 people in North India, has stymied the Indian government’s efforts to ease food prices.
The cold is destroying crops like tomatoes, peas, potatoes and cucumbers over an area of about 430,000 acres in the state of Punjab alone, according to IBNLive.com.
To deal with rising food prices the government is expected to ban the export of wheat products and is expected to take essential commodities off the futures market according to Moneycontrol.com. Officials are trying to quell fears by suggesting this spike in prices is in large part seasonal.
India’s income tax department began a series of raids on traders which coupled with new produce has increased onion supplies, The Economic Times reports. The Central Bank is also expected to announce rate hikes this month to ease inflation.