As soon as Biscomaun decided not to continue with onion sale from 30th November due to the lack of cooperation from the district administration. Bihar Assembly turned into a battle field between the opposition and the govt.
RJD MLA Shakti Singh Yadav asked if the govt is too eager to protect the interest of hoarders and black marketeers? Several Law makers said even in the open market the price of onions slumped once Biscomaun began to sell it at a rate of Rs 35 a kg.
According to several MLAs the rate of onion came down to Rs 60 a kg once Biscomaun vans started to move in the town. They are afraid the rates would zoom past Rs 100 in the wake of Biscomaun stopping the sale.
Readers would recall that the swelling crowd at Biscomaun counters kept increasing day after day leading to traffic jams at the busy Gandhi Maidan. Lack of police force and the absence of a positive approach from the administrator forced Biscomaun to announce the stoppage of sale.
There are media reports of employees wearing helmets while selling onions as surging crowds are feared to get uncontrollable any time. There is also reports of stone-pelting and mayhem coming from Arrah.
“We are a cooperative and we do not have the means to control this big a crowd”, said a disappointed Chairman Sunil Singh to Indian Cooperative when we asked him the reason behind this sudden decision.
Ever since we started to sell onions at the reduced rate people began to throng but lately it had become unmanable for our staff-members and we urgently needed the help of the local administration, which sadly was not there said Sunil while forwarding the videos of surging crowds to prove his point.
Local administration has its own funny argument with Patna DM saying Biscomaun should sell onion at spots where traffic jams could be avoided. “We have already employed 15 mobile vans for that”, argued a cooperator associated with Biscomaun.
Is it possible to shift the sale counters and our office as they are located on the perimeters of Gandhi Maidan, asked Sunil Singh. “The crowds could be easily managed only if the local police are willing to cooperate and give us adequate police force ”, he added.
It bears recall that the Biscomaun move to sell Nafed onions at Rs 35 kg had caught peoples’ attention in Bihar and Jharkhand in an unprecedented manner. Through its many counters and mobile vans it sold onions at the rate of Rs 35 a kg while the same is sold in the open market at Rs 80-90 a kg.
Such low rates led to riots in many places and the absence of support from the local administration has now forced Biscomaun to stop the sale. Many Patna residents feel cheated by the attitude of local administration.
Sunil Singh who is also on the Board of Nafed, earlier tried the idea of a fixed price for apple which was a huge success across Bihar.