Lahore: 40 chicken sellers held, 60 fined for overcharging
LAHORE: Special price control magistrates on Sunday arrested 40 chicken sellers and fined (Rs140,000) another 60 on the charge of overcharging.
The crackdown was launched by the officials after the CDGL officials observed a rapid increase in the prices of chicken up to Rs250 a kilogram since Aug 2.
“We were forcing the chicken sellers to bring down the price and sell the chicken (alive) at Rs138 and chicken meat at Rs200 during Ramazan. But they didn`t follow our instructions and continued to raise the price unnecessarily,” Tariq Zaman (Admin Officer-Conducting) of the City District Government of Lahore told Dawn.
He said though the chicken sellers were selling the product at the fixed rate of Rs200 in all Ramazan bazaars of the city, many were selling it at Rs240-250 in the open market.
He said the price control magistrates arrested 42 chicken sellers by raiding various parts of the city including Tollinton Market, Circular Road and Sheranwala Gate. He said the officials also imposed a fine of Rs140,000 on 60 chicken sellers for flouting the CDGL orders.
He said the CDGL also planned to impose section 144 of CrPC in case the chicken sellers started sending the chicken to other adjoining districts. “That is why we, in advance, have asked the district coordination officers (DCOs) of Gujranawala, Kasur, Nankana Sahib and Sheikhupura to ensure selling of chicken at the rates below or equal the rates fixed by the CDGL so that they (chicken sellers) couldn`t send it outside.”
The chicken sellers have condemned the Sunday`s arrests and termed it highhandedness. “The magistrates should arrest and impose fine on those involved in supplying chicken at higher rates to them,” a chicken seller told Dawn.
He said as he was purchasing chicken (alive) between Rs160 and Rs165 per kg, it was impossible for him to sell chicken meat at Rs200. He said the officials should stop harassing the chicken sellers and take action against the poultry businessmen.
Commissioner Jawad Rafique Malik said he had also directed the DCOs of Lahore, Nanakana Sahib, Sheikhupura and Kasur to arrest those involved in supplying chickens from poultry farms to chicken meat vendors at higher rates.