Consumerfed will set up around 1,495 cooperative sales outlets in central Kerala during the Onam-Ramzan period as part of its efforts to curb the uncontrolled rise in prices of essential commodities during the festival period.
The outlets include the existing 920 cooperative sales centres. The Onam-Ramzan fair begins on August 1 and will continue until September 15.
The subsidized sale of groceries and items of daily use will take place over the 45-day period at district-level fairs by co-operatives, Triveni department stores /supermarkets /megamarts, Neethi stores, Nanma stores and retail outlets run by service co-operative groups, Consumerfed president Adv. Joy Thomas and Managing Director Dr Rigi G Nair said at a press conference here.
As per the instructions of Hon’ble Minister for Co-operation Shri C N Balakrishnan, Consumerfed will carry out the programme in four phases through 45-day long fairs at the district level and the assembly constituency level, a 10-day co-operative Ramzan sale from August 1-10, and a 15-day co-operative Onam sale from September 1-15, 2013.
A total of 13 items will be sold at discounts of up to 30% at 14 district fairs and 140 sales festivals at the constituency level and the Ramzan and Onam fairs. These include four varieties of rice (at Rs 21/kg), sugar (Rs 26/kg), green gram (Rs 55/kg), Bengal gram (Rs 45/kg), black gram (Rs 42/kg), tuhar dal (Rs 45/kg), red beans (Rs 35/kg), coriander (Rs 60/kg), two varieties of chillies (Rs 55 and 76/kg) and coconut oil (Rs 62/kg).
The Ramzan special sale will be through 3,000 outlets spread across 14 districts including Triveni supermarkets, Nanma stores and Neethi stores run by cooperative groups. Besides the subsidized commodities consumers will be able to buy a special ‘Ramzan kit’ priced at Rs 400 and consisting of Biriyani rice, Dalda(500 g), Atta (1kg), Maida (1kg), Rava (1kg), Dates (500g), Powdered rice (1 kg), Tea (250 g), Coriander powder (250 g), Chilli powder (250 g) and Turmeric powder (250 g).
Similarly, the special Onam sales will take place at 4,000 outlets across the state and will have on sale the subsided items plus a special Triveni ‘payasam kit’.
The fairs will be open on all days during, including Sundays. Consumers can buy the all of the specified subsidized items once during the 45-day period by producing their ration cards.
District wise number of co-operative sales outlets in central Kerala are during the 10-day Ramzan: Alappuzha – 270, Kottayam – 140, Idukki – 110, Ernakulam – 200, Thrissur – 200; and the number of special Onam sales fairs are: Alappuzha – 250, Kottayam – 230, Idukki – 170, Ernakulam – 395 and Thrissur – 450.
Consumerfed is also planning to set up a pharmacy college in Thrissur during next academic year for which an amount of Rs. 50 lakh has been earmarked, Dr Rigi G Nair said.
He said this was intended to overcome the shortage of qualified D Pharm candidates needed to man its increasing number of Neethi Medical stores. Consumerfed plans to open 100 new Neethi medical stores this year besides 400 other Neethi stores under under the Co-operative sector. Already over 600 Neethi medical stores are functioning in the state, including 102 stores run directly by Consumerfed.
The Triveni Institute of Retail Management, to be opened in Idukki district this year itself would take care of the trained staff members required in the numerous retail shops functioning under public distribution system, co-operative and private sector networks, Dr Nair said.
As part of market intervention during festival seasons, an estimated 25,000 retail outlets would be set up in the state under the co-operative sector this year. These shops would sell 13 select items of daily use at 15 to 60 per cent subsidized rates.
Consumerfed Executive Director Shri John Fernandez was present at the media interaction.