Second phase of price-list scrutiny

KATHMANDU: The Department of Commerce (DoC) started the second phase of price-list (wholesale and retail) scrutiny from today but consumer rights groups smelt a rat as DoC excluded the media. On earlier inspections, DoC included the media for independent verification.

“Now, we cannot trust DoC,” said Jyoti Baniya of Consumer Rights Protection Forum (CRPF). Central Market Inspection Committee (CMIC), headed by director general of the department, had decided to include media in market inspections and the policy has not changed yet.

Under pressure from businessmen DoC has excluded the media, a DoC source said. “We don’t want to disturb the market by taking strong action at the start of the festive season,” Anil Kumar Thakur, director general had said yesterday. Black marketeers become active in the festive season from August to October.

“We found price-list in seven shops at Sajha Bhandar complex in Lagankhel,” said Kamal Bahadur Thapa, inspection officer. The team has given fish and meat shops of the area seven days to display price-list.

Dhurva Lal Tandukar, representing National Consumer Forum in CMIC was surprised at the absence of media.