Friday June 02, 2023

Peshawarites back fruit boycott call

March 30, 2023

PESHAWAR: People in Peshawar city have extended support to “Fruit Boycott’ call that got viral on social media in protest against the soaring prices of commodities during the holy month of Ramazan.

A call for a boycott of fruits appeared on social media recently urging the people not to purchase fruits for five days from March 27 to 31 as a protest against the exorbitant prices of the commodities in the market.The boycott call got viral on social media by gaining support from netizens who not only agreed to the idea but also shared it from their accounts with requests to people to follow and avoid purchasing fruits during these days.

A visit to the market found a thin presence of purchasers reflecting the support of people to the boycott call to protest the exorbitant prices.“The fruit vendors are charging more than double prices decided in the official rate list and they deserve to be taught a lesson,” opines Ahmad, a young boy who works in a private hospital.

Talking to this news agency, he said fruit dealers have increased prices by 100 per cent during Ramazan and this is not only against the teachings of Islam but also against all norms of humanity.

If someone buys three separate items to make fruit chaat for Iftar, it costs around Rs 600 to 700 which is not only out of the range of the poor but also of the middle class, observed Sakeena, a housewife.The woman said she welcomed the boycott call as a silent protest and that it can prove very effective if it is supported by the majority of people.

During a visit to fruit markets, the prices of different commodities were found to have increased more than double as the banana was selling at around Rs

200 per dozen before Ramazan but is now available at Rs350 to 400.Apple was available at Rs400 soon after the advent of Ramazan which was earlier carrying a price tag of Rs200 per kg. Similarly, the price of melon has shot from Rs 150 to 250 on the first day of Ramazan, forcing consumers to avoid the purchase.

Shakeel, a government employee, said he has decided to support the call for the fruit boycott and underscored the need of making such calls for other items as well. This is the strength of consumers and can be made more effective by creating awareness by utilizing social media, Shakeel suggested.

He said the majority of people including women and girls are using mobile phones through which awareness can be spread about the effectiveness of joint action by citizens.

Only the government cannot control profiteers, the consumers have to play their role in teaching them lessons by boycotting the products for a few days, Shakeel added.