Kunduz residents complain prices hiked in Ramadan
KUNDUZ CITY (Pajhwok): With the arrival of the holy month of Ramadan, the prices of essential items have doubled in northern Kunduz province, residents complained on Thursday.
Ramadan is supposed to be a month of charity and blessings, but residents of Kunduz City say essential goods are being sold at double the rates in whole of the country, particularly in Kunduz.
Haji Hakim, a resident of Kunduz city, said: “The prices of all food items have increased by not less than double. I don’t know why prices go up during Ramadan. Ee want the government to keep in check such shopkeepers and traders.”
Another resident, Karim, expressed concern over the increase in food items’ prices and said there was no mechanism in place to control the market.
“Shopkeepers are looting people with both hands by overpricing, but there is no one to ask them why they do so.”
He said the price of seven kilograms of onion jumped from 100 afghanis before Ramadan to 200 afghanis. “I personally cannot afford that price, we ask the government to pay attention,” he said.
According to Pajhwok report, the price of a kilogram of rice was 60 afghanis before Ramadan but now increased to 80 afghanis. Similarly the price of a kilogram of bean increased from 50 afghanis to 70 afghanis and seven kilograms of onion from 100afs to 150afs.
However, shopkeepers linked the price-hike to the increase in the value of the US dollar value against the afghani.
Shafiq, a shopkeeper in Kunduz city, said they purchased all goods with US dollars and the value of the greenback increased in the month of Ramadan.
He asked the Afghan government to pay attention to keeping the value of the Afghan currency from falling against foreign currencies.
Massoud Wahdat, head of Kunduz chamber of commerce and industry, confirmed the hike in prices of essential items and said: “Unfortunately this problem has become a culture that some traders increase prices in Ramadan, poor people cannot afford high prices.”
He said the chamber of commerce and industry had asked security organs to cooperate with the trader’s body in controlling the market.
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