Faisal Enterprise, a wholesale trader of ginger and garlic at Shyambazar in Dhaka, was selling ginger imported from China at Tk245 per kilogramme on Wednesday (April 22).
But an analysis of the letter of credit (LC) of the import in March revealed that the actual price of per kg ginger was Tk90-Tk97, said Manjur Mohammad Shahriar, deputy director of the Directorate of National Consumer Rights Protection's (DNCRP) Dhaka divisional office.
After a 13-minute drive conducted by the DNCRP, the wholesale trader reduced the price of ginger from Tk245 to Tk120 per kg.
Officials, who conducted the drive, said some traders were raising prices of various goods artificially in this crisis situation.
During the drive, the owner of Faisal Enterprise Sharifuzzaman was asked to show the purchase receipt of the ginger. But he could not show it. He said Brother's Set International in Chattogram was the importer of the ginger.
Sharifuzzaman told the officials that the importer Arifuzzaman told him to sell the ginger at Tk235 per kg. When the officials asked Arifuzzaman over phone about the import price and selling price of per kg ginger, he did not want to disclose it. Later, he instructed Sharifuzzaman to sell ginger at Tk120 per kg. After the direction, the trader of Shyambazar started selling the spice at Tk120 per kg.
Importers and wholesalers are making the ginger market volatile.
People have to buy ginger from retail markets at Tk300 to Tk350 per kg. 15 days ago, the price was Tk160 to Tk180.
Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) advised people to drink warm water with ginger to help fight coronavirus infection. After that the demand of ginger has increased and traders are taking the advantage of it. However, there are enough stock of local and imported ginger in the country.