Rawalpindi Braces for Flour Shortage as Prices Skyrocket


The Punjab government has implemented a significant price hike on cheap subsidized flour, leading to fears of a flour crisis in the Rawalpindi district. The Grocery Merchant Association has responded by announcing a boycott on the sale of flour starting today. 
The cost of a 10kg bag of cheap subsidized flour has risen from Rs648 to Rs1160, while the ex-mill price has been fixed at Rs1140. This has left grocery shop owners with the difficult decision of either absorbing the price increase or passing it on to customers, which would be unaffordable for many. 
Salim Pervez Butt, the central president of the Grocery Merchants Association, expressed his concern, stating that “We cannot buy a 10kg bag of cheap flour at Rs1,165 and sell it at Rs1,160.” The decision by the Grocery Merchant Association to boycott the sale of flour has resulted in the halt of the purchase of approximately 25,000 flour bags daily. 
Read More: Flour prices shoot up as wheat crisis in Sindh deepens
Naanbai Association President, Shafiq Qureshi, has also announced that the price of roti, naan, and paratha will increase by Rs10 each from the 1st of Ramazan. 
Meanwhile, the Rawalpindi district administration has taken steps to distribute 1,447,775 free flour bags to deserving individuals. This initiative aims to alleviate the burden of the price hike on the poor and marginalized. The administration has set up 232 trucking points across the district, with 100,000 flour bags to be distributed daily. 
Despite these efforts, concerns remain over the potential impact of the price hike and boycott on the availability of flour in the Rawalpindi district. The Central Grocery Merchants Association has sent a protest letter to Deputy Commissioner Hasan Waqar Cheema, and it is yet to be seen how the situation will be resolved. 

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