Shillong, Mar 20: Following reports that some traders were hoarding and black-marketing essential commodities, James Sangma, Minister in-charge, Food Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Department said that strict action will be taken against such traders and retailers.
“In the wake of measures to contain the spread of COVID -19 virus in the state – it has come to the notice of the Government of Meghalaya that some unscrupulous traders are trying to take advantage of the situation and overcharge customers,” he said, adding that strict action including arrest and other punitive action will be enforced.
The minister also directed Deputy Commissioners of all districts to ensure that the stock of essential commodities is sufficient.
“I have also directed that all Government wholesale dealers and Fair Price Shops maintain buffer stock after meeting the needs of the common people and there should be no overcharging of price,” he said.
The minister in-charge, Food Civil Supplies, James Sangma also revealed that he will be personally overseeing daily stock availability and monitoring the price of essential commodities.
“I have directed stringent action including inspection and raids to prevent black-marketing and hoarding. Stern action shall be taken as per Section 7 of the Essential Commodities Act, 1955 and Section 3 of the Prevention of Black-marketing and Maintenance of Supplies of Essential Commodities Act, 1980,” he said.
He also appealed to the public stating there was no need for panic or concern as there is sufficient stock of essential commodities in the state and the situation is being constantly monitored.
“I would urge all citizens of our state to report malpractices to the Deputy Commissioners and officials concerned directly and kindly cooperate with the State Government,” he said.