Each person can purchase a maximum of 2kg lentil, 4kg sugar and five liters of soybean oil
The Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) on Wednesday launched the sale of increased quantity of essential food items under its open market sale (OMS) scheme to provide relief to low-income group and unemployed day labourers ahead of Ramadan.
The state-run agency on Tuesday published a press release on their website, which said each TCB truck would now contain 1,000-1,500 kilograms of sugar instead of regular 500-600kg, 1,500-2,000 liters of soybean oil instead of 800-1,000 liters, and 200-300kg of lentil instead of regular 50-100kg.
Each person can purchase a maximum of 2kg lentil, 4kg sugar and five liters of soybean oil.
The TCB will sell these essential items through 350 trucks across the country including around 50 trucks in the capital.
The corporation sells sugar at Tk50 per kg, lentil at Tk50 a kg and soybean oil at Tk80 a liter. These are sold in the capital's kitchen and local markets for Tk65-72 per kg, Tk130 per kg and Tk105 per liter respectively.
The state-run agency has intensified its sale of edible oil, sugar and lentil under its open market sale (OMS) scheme since March 26, when the government announced the 10-day public holiday due to coronavirus.
Visiting several TCB sales points in the city including Rampura and Malibagh, people were seen queuing up in the lines to purchase their necessary items despite the general holiday.
"This is a relief to low-income group and unemployed day labourers who have been hit hard by the virtual lockdown," said Sharif Khan at Rampura.
"Prices of essential food items are high in retail and kitchen markets. I could not purchase oil, lentil or sugar due to my limited budget. Today I purchased some of those at affordable rates," said Mominul Alam, another customer from Malibagh.
A TCB seller at Malibagh said the low-income group were demanding for more supply of existing items, as well as more essential food items from the government.
"The government increased the quantity so that nobody goes empty-handed. New items may be added soon," he added.
TCB's spokesperson Humayun Kabir said, "We have adequate supply of essential food items. There is nothing to be worried. This OMS will run until May 20. If needed we will increase the quantity in future."
New food items such as chickpeas and dates would be added in the list soon on the occasion of Ramadan, he added.