Selling sub-standard fruit and vegetables, no stalls for basins, grams, pulses
Ramazan Bazars disappoint people
RAWALPINDI—Ramazan Sasta Bazars set up by the district administration on the instructions of Punjab government have dashed hopes of the citizens to get essential commodities for Iftar/Sehr at subsidized rates.
Though the officials responsible for the establishment of the Sasta Bazars have managed to arrange Tarpaulin shade for the convenience of the shopkeepers and the customers but what is discouraging the visitors is that most of the essential items are completely missing in these Bazars.
A visit to a few Bazars including the one at Khayabane-Sir Syed in Sector II, near Awan Market exposed the claims of sale of cheaper items than compared to the market. First of all there were no sale points for Ramazan essential items like Basins, Grams, pulses and vegetable ghee and oil.
Though there have been several fruit stalls but the quality is inferior than those being sold just outside the Bazars. The reason is that the administration is hell bent to keep the fruit rates lower than the market but no attention is being given to the stuff being offered to the customers. As a result, the sale of fruit at the Bazars is nominal and only those people buy mangoes and water melons of poor quality who cannot afford.
A few items of vegetables are on sale like Potatoes and Onions. These are of better quality like in the market but there is no major difference in the prices of the market and the Sasta Bazars. For example Onions were being sold at the Sasta bazaars at Rs 24 pkg while in the market the price is Rs 25 pkg.
The customers at the Sasta Bazar said they are disappointed to see that there are no sale points for Basins/ Grams and the quality of fruits is poor. They said that the bazaars were set up on the direction of Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif and a massive amount of subsidy was announced by him to facilitate the people. However there are no items on which the subsidy can be given by the government like flour, basin, gram, and other pulses.
In interview, a young doctor Liaquat Jadoon, who had come to the Bazar with lot of expectation said he did not buy anything because required items were either not available or their quality was very poor. He pointed out that while there is rush of people buying fruits for Iftar in the market, the Bazar was almost giving a deserted look and that speaks a lot about its utility.
He said the district administration instead of leaving the management of the bazaars at the disposal of clerical staff, must post senior officers who should ensure availability of all essential items.—INP