Common people bore the brunt of demonetisation when they visited local markets on the second Sunday after the Centre’s “hasty and arbitrary” decision of demonetisation, due to a sharp rise in the price of vegetables.
The ordeal of common people continued even after eleven days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement of demonetising Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes. With banks remaining closed on Sunday, people didn’t have to queue up outside its branches to withdraw their hard earned money from their accounts but they were shocked when they went to local markets with a small amount of money to buy vegetables.
Suddenly the price of most vegetables has gone up. The price of gourd went up by Rs 6 per kg. On Saturday it was sold at Rs 24 per kg. Similarly, the price of brinjal and cucumber has gone up to Rs 40 and Rs 32 per kg which was Rs 25 to Rs 30 respectively.
Dhiren Ghosh, a vegetable seller, in a market in South Kolkata said that usually the price of everything goes up by around Rs 2 to Rs 3 every Sunday and most people buy vegetables on this day for the entire week. But after many years, this Sunday the price of most vegetables went up by around Rs 6 to Rs 10.
He stated that they had increased the price as they had to buy the vegetables at comparatively much higher price from the wholesale markets.
“We had incurred a heavy loss as a huge quantity of vegetables perished in our godown as the sale had dropped all of a sudden after the announcement by Modi. Farmers were also affected due to the drop in demand for vegetables. Thus, it was well known that the price of perishable goods would go up,” said Jayanta Santra, a retailer.
Most ATMS in the state remained closed even on Sunday. People continued to run from one ATM to another to withdraw money.
There was either no money or only Rs 2,000 notes which were available in the ATMs which remained open.
Long queues were found outside ATMs on late Saturday night. People remained standing in the queue till Rs 100 notes were available in some of the ATMs. People were to be apprehensive of withdrawing Rs 2,000 notes from ATMs as they would not get its change easily.
Meanwhile, torn notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 were found in a bank outside a residential apartment on Jyotish Roy Road at Behala at around 12.30 pm on Sunday. Local people found a bag containing the money and informed the police. Some people had seen the bag falling from the terrace of the adjacent residential apartment.
Preliminary investigation revealed that a few days ago, a resident of the apartment Prabir Agarwal, who is a businessman, went to a bank. He was carrying some fake currencies. Though the bank officials had allowed the deposition of the original notes, he had somehow, brought back the fake currencies. Police suspect that it was the same money that was thrown out in a bag. Agarwal was taken to police station for questioning.