Andhra Pradesh

The battle of the onions in Andhra Pradesh

On the opening day of the winter session of the Andhra Pradesh assembly, Chandrababu Naidu took the floor outside the House first. The Telugu Desam protested wearing onion garlands and scales with jewellery on one side, to show the skyrocketing prices of onions.

But inside the House, chief minister Jaganmohan Reddy decided to tell Naidu that his onion was better than the TDP chief’s onion. 

“If there is any state in the country which is supplying onions to the common man at Rs 25, it is Andhra Pradesh. But Chandrababu Naidu’s Heritage supermarket is selling onions at Rs 200 per kg. Their protest today is complete hypocrisy,” said Jagan, asking the TDP leaders to do a reality check before taking part in the protest.

Jagan is not off the mark. The Rythu bazaars in Andhra Pradesh are indeed selling onions at Rs 25 per kg while Heritage supermarkets (now owned by Future Group) are selling at the market price, which if not Rs 200, is hovering around the Rs 150-165 mark. The Andhra Pradesh government claims to have bought 36500 quintals of onions to sell to the people. 

But while on paper, Jagan sounds like he has done his job well, he too needs to do a reality check. There have been serpentine queues at the government outlets to purchase onions. Local media reported about a 65-year-old man died of a cardiac arrest while waiting in the queue in Gudivada in Krishna district but it was refuted by the government as a case of fake news and that he was not standing in the queue to buy onions.

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