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Border traders’ stir affects fish market in Tripura

AGARTALA: Fish market in Tripura has been hit as the suspension of import-export at Akhaura land custom station (LCS) in Agartala entered the third day on Monday.

The suspension came as part of the agitation of the border traders demanding shifting of off-loading station.

According to report, fish supply in all 15 major markets in Tripura was affected seriously which was followed by a steep rise in price.

”At the end of the completion of plan period of attaining self -sufficiency in fish production launched by the government, Tripura is still depending on the import of fish from Bangladesh and an estimated amount of one metric ton fish are coming to Tripura market everyday,” said Subhas Saha, an Agartala fish importer.

Saha however, pointed out that apart from supply form Bangladesh almost an equal amount of hybrid fish (Ruhi and Katala) had been entering the state everyday besides the state’ss own supply of another three metric ton local fish.

However, Exporters and Importers Association of Tripura (EIAT) officials said not only fish export but Bangladeshi products- processed food items, cement, plastics, sheet glass, dry fish, furniture and stone chips, amounting to about Rs 1 crore, had also been affected because of the agitation.

They alleged that the state government had been promising to shift the load dumping station from LCS for facilitating the smooth vehicular, goods and passenger movement across the border because the dumping ground generates pollution in the area.

”Despite several rounds of discussion, no positive decision has yet been implemented, we have asked the authority to make dumping at Lankamura side, only a few hundred yards from the LCS on temporary basis till establishment of new load dumping station,” said Primal Roy Choudhury, president EIAT.

Meanwhile, reacting to the fish price hike in the state, Civil Supplies Minister Manik Dey here on Monday admitted that the government did not have any strong mechanism to regulate the retail market of fish, vegetables and meat and taking the advantage, a section of businessmen hiked the rates at their choice.

”It is not possible to bring every edible commodity under civil supplies outlet but if any consumer lodges specific complaint against any trader of selling any item at irrational price, the authority would act upon,” Mr Dey said.

The minister added that Tripura had been demanding the supply of 14 essential commodities in rationing system but the Centre did not allow it.

Bangladesh’s exports to India have expected to touch one billion US dollar so far this year, for the simple reason that customers in India have developed a special liking for its neighbor’s product.

Bangladesh seems quite excited in exploring the north-eastern states of India because Bangladeshi products like food items, melamine and toiletries are much in demand here.

Ready-made garments form the chief exports of Bangladesh, which nearly accounts for 80 percent of the total earnings of the country. (UNI)

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