Nellore: Cashing in on the Covid pandemic situation, private transporters have reportedly increased charges for transportation of goods, including that of essential commodities. Farmers and traders, who are apprehensive of a possible lockdown in the country, have no other go but to export their produce by paying huge prices. Normally, trucks in around Nellore district have a good demand for transportation of paddy from February to April-end. Further, the trucks are engaged in transportation of fertilizers, palmolein oil, coal and others during the period.
Some of the private transporters have been charging higher prices than usual even for milk, vegetables and other essential commodities, complain traders. “Usually, I have to transport vegetables from my farm land to Nellore city in a truck. I used to pay
600. Now, the truck drivers have been demanding at least800. Even, I was forced to go with the increased price due to fear of lockdown,” said S Meeravali, a trader from Indukurpeta mandal.
Most of the farmers from rural areas export their vegetables to other States. The situation is similar in Chittoor district also. Majority of the trucks in the district import and export goods to and from neighbouring states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Many traders, farmers from bordering mandals such as Palamaner, V Kota and Brahmasamudram and people from people from Mukalacheruvu, Nagari, Madanapalle, BN Kandriga, Varadaiahpalem, Nagalapuram and Satyavedu in the district export their produce to Koyambedu market in Chennai. Paddy and other horticulture crops are exported to Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Telangana.
“We have to transport mango to mandis in other States. Truck drivers in the region have been demanding more money now. As there is no alternative, we are forced to go with the high prices. Delay in shifting the produce may affect the quality of mangoes and reduce the price,” said M Harinath, a trader from Bangarupalyam mandal of the district.