In order to address the shortage of tur dal and curb its rising prices, the government plans to increase import of the pulse by 35 per cent to 12 lakh tonnes in the current fiscal year, reported news agency PTI. As per the report, Tur dal (pigeon peas) production has witnessed a decline, with the country producing 30 lakh tonnes in the 2022-23 crop year (July-June), compared to 39 lakh tonnes in the previous year.
“Tur is giving us trouble. All-India average retail price of tur is up by 25 per cent to Rs 128.66 per kg, when compared to last year’s level. But it will start cooling down after import begins,” Consumer Affairs Secretary Rohit Kumar Singh said in a media briefing, as per the report.
“We consume around 44-45 lakh tonne in India. Every year, we have to import. This year, obviously, we have to import more. We will import 12 lakh tonne in the current fiscal,” he said. Adding that so far, the country has imported 6 lakh tonne of tur. Imports are undertaken from Myanmar and East African countries. The crop in East African countries will start arriving in August, so the domestic prices will cool down.
The country imported 8.9 lakh tonnes of Tur dal during the fiscal year 2022-23.
Consumers Affairs Secretary also said to check the prices of tur the government has taken several measures, as per the report. The stock limit imposed on traders, millers, and importers on June 2 has helped bring down the prices of tur.
“From the day the stock limit was imposed, there is a downward trend in prices,” he noted.
In addition, the government has decided to release 50,000 tonnes from the buffer stock into the market, which will further alleviate pressure on the prices, Singh said.
Also Read: Govt To Release Buffer Tur Stocks To Millers To Keep Prices Under Control
Furthermore, apart from tur, the secretary said that there was a 7.22 per cent increase in the all-India average retail price of urad, reaching Rs 111.77 per kg on June 28 compared to the previous year. The situation is expected to improve as supplies increase from Myanmar, leading to a correction in prices.
“Myanmar was hoarding urad, and now it cannot hold for long because of the rains out there. They have to sell it to India as no other country consumes this pulse. Our crop will also arrive, and prices will come down,” he said.
The prices of Moong dal have also experienced a year-on-year increase of 7.07 per cent, reaching Rs 109.23 per kg on June 28. However, the secretary said that prices are expected to decline due to anticipated bumper production in Madhya Pradesh, the report said.
As for masoor dal, the secretary said that prices have remained lower by 5 per cent compared to the previous year, standing at Rs 91.78 per kg on June 28, the report said.
“This is because, unlike tur, our domestic production increased to 16 lakh tonne but lower than domestic consumption of about 22 lakh tonne. We still need to import about 6 lakh tonne,” Singh said.
India imports masoor dal from Canada and Australia, where the crop is expected to be higher than the previous year. So, masoor supply is available, and the domestic prices will come down further, he said.
The country imported 11 lakh tonnes of masoor dal in 2022-23.
Talking about the Chana pulse, the secretary said that approximately 46 per cent of the total pulses consumed in India are chana, while tur, urad, masoor dal, and other pulses account for 10 per cent. Chana prices have maintained stability throughout the year.
Additionally, the secretary emphasised the need to view pulses in a comprehensive manner, considering their price sensitivity and varying preferences across different regions of the country, the report said.