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Time to take up cudgels

IT Desk
Traders are taking advantages of the total absence of the price fixation committee and the rampant extortion of illegal taxes. Okram Ibobi once told the House that militants of all hues are extorting Rs 30 crore everyday from the vehicles of Manipur. This illegal tax is collected indirectly from the consumers in the state with impunity.
In an overcrowded metro like Delhi or Kolkata one kg of chicken is sold at Rs 130 whereas it is Rs 200 in and around Imphal. Pork is available in Delhi at Rs 150 a kg though it is sold at Rs 300 in Imphal. Before the beef ban it was available at Rs 120 a kg. Fish is also much cheaper in the metros since there is no group extorting illegal taxes.

Some chicken sellers could sell chicken at Rs 150 or lower since they brought it straight from Assam. However the traders dealing in locally sold chicken objected. They even took law in their hands to intercept the trucks to distribute the live chickens to the urchins along the highways. In other words consumers are forced to buy costlier.
The government has failed to protect the truckers from the tax collectors including those of the government offices. Most of the police and other posts along the highways are for this purpose and not to maintain law and order. A hamstrung government may fail to do so.
But why should the people remain half dead and half dumb? Millions of Rupees will be splurged on Ningol Chakkouba on buying imported items. The appeal to depend on local fruits and products had fallen on deaf ears since there is not enough substitute. This vicious cycle has been going on. It is somewhat surprising that the people are now immune from this kind of exploitation.

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