Subsidised salt being sold at inflated prices

Bajura, November 3

There are reports that the salt provided by the government at subsidised rate is being sold at inflated prices in Bajura.

As learnt, Bhanu brand salt, which was supposed to be sold only by the depot of Salt Trading Corporation at subsidised rate, is being openly sold at inflated prices in the local market.

Though the salt costs just nine rupees at the depots of Salt Trading Corporation, it is being sold at Rs 25 or even more by local traders, who reportedly buy it at the subsidised rate from Maure-based STC depot in  Budhiganga Municipality.

“As the depot is directly selling salt to traders, we’re forced to buy it from local shops by paying up to Rs 25 or more,” said Bhuwan Thapa, a local of Budhiganga Municipality. Thapa also accused the authority concerned of turning a blind eye.

Traders, however, denied doing anything wrong. “I know that the government provides subsidy on salt, but as the depot sells it to anyone, we paid the price to buy it and are now selling it by keeping some margin of profit,” said a trader.

On his part, STC Moure Depot employee Mahabir Saud clarified that they had been providing up to 200 kg of salt to anyone who approached them. “Everyone, who comes to us, can get up to 200 kg at the subsidised rate,” he said, adding that it was not up to him to verify whether the purchased salt ended up in the market.

Bajura Chief District Officer Chetraj Baral, on his part, said he had heard of the subsidised salt being sold in the market at inflated prices.

“We’ve received complaints and learning about the same from the STC staffers. We will take action against traders found selling salt at inflated prices,” he said.