LAHORE: The Utility Stores Corporation (USC) has reduced rates of sugar and flour on the directions of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to provide relief to people during Ramazan.

Consumers, however, complained about shortage of commodities in some cities in Punjab.

Long queues of the consumers were seen outside utility stores to get vegetable oil and other food items at subsidised rates. Some of the stores ran out of sugar and shortage of flour and vegetable oil and other items.

Earlier, USC announced that sugar was available at utility stores across the country at Rs70 per kilogram with reduction of Rs15 and the price of 10 kilo flour pack was slashed by Rs75 and available at Rs400 to benefit

the people from the federal government’s Ramazan Relief Package.

The consumers welcomed the reduction in prices of commodities but said they had to wait for hours to buy daily items.

They said there was shortage of flour, oil and sugar at different stores and demanded the government to ensure availability of all items at every store.

They said the store administrations were conditioning sale and purchase of oil and sugar with other items and not providing single item to consumers.

Some media channels also reported missing of flour, oil and sugar at stores in Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Multan and Sahiwal. The people were also seen standing outside the store under the sun in summer in the footages aired on news channels.

USC spokesperson Sajid Rehman told Dawn that the shortage was temporary due to rush at the stores.

“We have doubled the supply of three to four items on the stores on a daily basis and will soon solve the problem,” he said.

He said the shortage of flour, sugar and oil was only because of consumers rush and they would provide missing items soon.

Published in Dawn, April 22nd, 2022

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