LAHORE  - Halt in import from India kept the rate of potato high while other vegetables prices could not drop either despite the fact that domestic harvesting has been started and local supply significantly improved.

The rates of vegetable particularly of onion, tomato, pease, ladyfinger, cucumber, bitter guard, brinjal and cauliflower have once again started to go up not only in Sunday Bazaars but also in open market.

According to a market survey, price of tomato had jumped by more than 200 per cent last week, crossing the figure of Rs80 per kg in open market, have shown some relief and dropped to Rs40-50 per kg in Sunday bazaars and open market respectively. During a visit, it was observed the prices of almost all vegetables except potatoes are still high despite considerable increase in supply in all major makeshift markets of the town including, Shadman, Iqbal Town and Islampura Sunday bazaars. Market sources said that provincial capital vegetable markets depend on supply of onion, tomato, ladyfinger, brinjal and bitter guard from Sindh or from India to meet the local requirement as harvesting of local crop starts usually at the end of May. So, delay in import of onion from India along with the arrival of Ramazan will further lift its rates in market of provincial capital. Prices of vegetables in these makeshift cheaper markets registered an upward trend, with profiteers starting hoarding ahead of Ramazan.  Only rotten and substandard onion from Sindh was being supplied to the market as hoarders are storing it to make money during the month of Ramazan when its consumption increases manifolds.

In Sunday bazaars of the city, tomato was available in limited quantity. It is expected that tomato price will come down in a couple of days but there are least chances in decline of onion rates, market sources said. The price of onion will decrease on start of domestic production of Punjab, also improving quality of available onion in the market, they added.

According to market survey, capsicum was available for Rs45 per kg, pumpkin at Rs52 per kg, luffa at Rs62 per kg, but sold at Rs70 per kg. Ladyfinger rate in Sunday bazaars was fixed at Rs80 per kg but sold at Rs100 per kg while arum price was fixed at Rs80/kg but sold at higher rate of Rs100/ kg.Peas were sold at Rs100/kg, registering an overcharging of Rs18 per kg while cauliflower rate was fixed at Rs26 per kg but it was not sold there. Cabbage official rate was fixed at Rs16/kg but was available in limited quantity at Rs30/kg.

Green chilli rate was fixed at Rs60/kg but it was sold at higher rate of Rs80 per kg. In the same way, bitter guard was selling at Rs60 per kg both in Sunday bazaars and in open market.