GUWAHATI, July 14 � The North-east bound trucks stranded at West Bengal border for the past six days, started moving towards the region from today, after State government's intervention into the matter. The trucks are loaded with perishable essential commodities including potatoes and onions.
Discussing this issue at a review meeting today, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi asked the department concerned to keep a strict vigil on the prices of potato and onion in the market. The government assured the people that there would be no shortage of potato in the market as a stock of nearly 40,000 metric ton potatoes exists in 14 cold storage facilities of the State.
The review meeting on the implementation of the National Food Security Act led by Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi at the secretariat conference room here, also decided to enlist onions and potatoes as essential commodities in a bid to curb hoarding.
It may be noted that restrictions on the movement of West Bengal produced potatoes led to this situation where more than 100 trucks loaded with essential commodities were stranded on the Assam-West Bengal Border at Baxirhat check-gate.
Supply department sources told The Assam Tribune that total 29 trucks have already entered Assam border and are heading towards their respective destinations. Other trucks are also supposed to start moving in a phased manner. "The issue was taken up at Deputy Commissioners' level after which the trucks got clearance at the check-gate,� added the sources.
Market observers �however, felt the need to adopt some concrete steps to avoid such situation in the future, keeping in mind the perishable nature of the commodities. �The entire procedure of taking up this issue at government level takes a couple of days. In hot and humid weather conditions, nearly half of the stock gets damaged in the process," a wholesale potato trader of Guwahati said.
In the review meeting today, State Food and Civil Supply Minister Najrul Islam said that there would be no unprecedented hike in the rate of potato or onion. He further said that a train rake-load of onion from Nasik would reach Changsari Railway Station tomorrow.