The price of sugar in the open market has increased by Rs 20 to Rs 60 before the onset of the upcoming Ramadan. The Punjab government raided various sugar mills and secret warehouses and seized thousands of sugar bags hoarded to create price hike during the holy month. The Punjab government told the hoarders to sell their stock immediately at Rs 40. Meanwhile, Federal Minister for Commerce and Industries Manzoor Wattoo held talks with sugar tycoons and allowed them to charge price of their choice.
In an open economy, the state should have no control over prices of commodities. It should not raid warehouses or threaten sugar mill owners with legal action or seize their stocks.
There are so many other ways to control the prices such as importing the commodity and bringing it in the market, forcing the tycoons to lower the prices.
Boycott is another public way of controlling the prices. Sugar mill owners will have a hardtime if the whole nation boycotts the sweet commodity during Ramadan or significantly reduces its consumption.
Sugar has no health benefit and is called "an unhealthy energy source". Almost all health experts on morning TV shows ask people to avoid it.
The media and the government can play their role in it. Just imagine the impact of the prime minister coming on state television and saying that he is boycotting sugar in Ramadan.
I am boycotting sugar until after Eid which means no sweetened tea, no donuts, no lemon tart pastries, no fizzy drinks.