Mutton to be sold at `535 without offal
Srinagar: After four months, the deadlock between the government and traders over prices of mutton ended on Wednesday after both the sides agreed to fresh rates.
Kashmir Economic Alliance representative Farooq Ahmad Dar said that the administration has fixed the retail price of mutton at Rs 535 per kilogram without offal and Rs 490 with offal.
He said that the fresh rates would be applicable across Kashmir from Thursday. “While an official announcement was awaited, the fixing of fresh rates for mutton brings to end a four month long disagreement between the government and the mutton dealers,” he told media persons here.
He said during these months, mutton industry has suffered losses amounting to about 800 crores.
The crisis began last year in November when the government announced rates fixing the retail price of mutton at Rs 480 per kilogram. This mutton dealers resisted and closed down their shops leading to non-availability of mutton in the Valley. Earlier, mutton was sold at Rs 600 per kilogram.
All Kashmir Wholesale Mutton Dealers Association General Secretary Mehraj-u-din Ganai agreed they have accepted the new rates. Last time, mutton rates were revised in 2016 and the rate of mutton per kilogram was fixed by the administration at Rs 400. “After more than five years, the administration has given an increment of only Rs 80,” he said
In the last meeting between the government and representatives of mutton dealers and retailers, the government had proposed Rs 515 per kg mutton. But the latter had rejected the same saying that it would cause them huge loss.
President Retailers Mutton Dealer Association Khazir Ahmad Regu said though there is less margin in Rs 535 but they have agreed to follow the new rate list from tomorrow.
He said that a fact-finding committee formed by the dealers to examine the mutton rates across India has lent support to their claims that retail dealers in Kashmir procure grade-A quality mutton at Rs 518 per kilogram.