PABNA, Apr 13: Stockpiling practices of business community has pushed up hilsa price in the district town since one kilogram hilsa is selling at Tk 1,500 to Tk 2,200 only before two days of Pahela Baishakh, the first day of Bangla New Year 1423.
Last year, one kg hilsa was sold at Tk 1,500 to Tk 1,800. But, now one standard size hilsa of over one kg is now selling at Tk 3,000 per kilogram and a medium-size one of around 590 grams to 800 grams, locally known as 'LC hilsa', is being sold at Tk 1,800 to Tk 1,500 per kilogram in local market.
Rana, a shopper in the town, informed this correspondent that the price of hilsa shot up hurriedly within last 24 hours due to increasing demand from local household consumers. But more prominent cause of abnormal price has resulted from the added demand of hilsa exporters, he pointed out.
On the other hand, shortage in supply of the dear fish on the eve of Pahela Baishakh has also aggravated the price. Moreover, the existing ban on fishing hilsa and the drives against jatka (hilsa fingerling) catching have contributed to the rise in prices, locals said.
Probir Saha, a local businessman of Baro bazaar in Pabna town alleged that a section of wholesalers in Pabna, Jessore, Khulna, Satkhira, Bagerhat and Chittagong are stocking hilsa. This has emerged as prime cause of artificial crisis in overall hilsa crises.
A number of businessmen in and around the town said if the stocking tendency continues, the market price of hilsa will reach up to Tk 5,000 to Tk 6,000 per kilogram during the celebration of Bangla New Year.
Since continued stockpiling practices of business community has led to this exorbitant market price, many frustrated household consumers also demanded introduction and implementation of a new ban on wide-ranging use of hilsa during the Pahela Baishakh celebrations.