Only regular price magistrates can control markets.

LAHORE -- Sky-rocketing prices of vegetables, fruits and several commodities have hit the common man adversely, without any effective check by the administration in the absence of full-time price magistrates.

'We are facing worst inflation these days, which has made life difficult. Frankly speaking, I am left with no money after 15th of every month and I have to borrow money from friends and relatives to run my home for the rest of he month, ' says Qasim, while talking to Dawn at Johar Town Sunday Bazaar. 'Though the Sunday Bazaar prices are relatively lower than the open market, these too have gone beyond our reach. But the political parties (PML-N, PPP, PTI etc) are fighting with each other for power,' he deplored.

Shehzad, another shopper laments that the prices of vegetables, fruits, flour, sugar, rice etc continue rising on a daily basis and it seems there is no one to check those involved in increasing prices artificially through hoarding, overcharging and other corrupt practices.

'The price of wheat flour, especially Chakki Atta, was Rs75 per kilogram about a year ago.

But now it is not available for Rs165 per kilo,' he lamented.

Maqsood, a customer, complained about quality of the vegetables, fruits and meat available in Sunday and model bazaars. According to him, though the meat (beef and mutton) is available at lower rates in these markets, its quality is usually poor. 'Last Sunday, after a long time, I bought mutton. But it couldn't be cooked well even in a pressure cooker. Later, I came to know from someone that the mutton was of an old animal,' he regretted, requesting the authorities concerned to also ensure quality of the items put on sale in such markets.

The situation is worse in the open market, where shopkeepers continue overcharging the customers, ignoring the official price lists. 'The potato is being sold for Rs40 per kilogram in Sunday bazaars, but shopkeepers are charging Rs60 per kg in the open market. Similarly, other items, including...

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