No shortage of salt in country, don’t panic: Centre

Patna: Rubbishing the rumours of shortage of salt across the country, especially in Uttar Pradesh where people were seen thronging shops in sheer panic, the Centre has assured that there is no such deficit and has called on the state government to take action on those spreading such rumours.

Speaking to ANI here, Union Food and Public Distribution Minister Ram Vilas Paswan asserted that there is absolutely no shortage of salt and that the prices were still the same.

He further stated that the Akhilesh Yadav-led state government must take action against those trying to trigger panic among the masses.

“State government must track down those people trying to sell salt for 200 Rupees per kilo. This is just wrong. There is no shortage of salt, sugar, rice, wheat or even pulses for that matter,” Paswan said.

The Union Minister alleged that this development by a clear case of politics being played with the UP polls nearing, adding that an attempt was being made to tarnish the Centre’s image.

Earlier, the Department of Consumer Affairs clarified that there is enough salt to meet any unexpected shortage.

“We monitor the prices of 22 essential commodities on daily basis. As per the prices reported by centres from across the country, there has been no increase in price of salt whatsoever,” a statement read.

A rumour of salt shortage which that originated in UP, triggered panic among citizens on Friday night, as a mad rush was seen at grocery stores were people were seeing leaving with several bags of salt.

In Moradabad district of Uttar Pradesh, there were reports of panicked customers flocking to market as rumours flew thick and fast.

Kicking into action, the state police detained a person in Rampur for spreading rumours.

In the national capital, tensions prevailed in Jamia Nagar area as residents pelted stones at police buses amid rumours of shortage of salt and hike in prices of the essential commodities.