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Imphal: Transportation problems and unavailability of manpower during the COVID-19 pandemic are the main causes of rising prices of essential commodities in Manipur, the state assembly was informed on Tuesday.

Consumer affairs, food and public distribution minister Thokchom Satyabrata Singh said that his department has been trying its level best to solve the problem of price rise.

Replying to a calling attention motion on the issue of price rise, the minister said the situation during the pandemic is unusual.

Problems of transportation and unavailability of labour in loading and unloading essential goods such as rice are the main causes of the price hike, he said on the concluding day of the monsoon session.

Singh, however, did not elaborate on the “problems” of transportation.

The minister said his department deals with 19 items but fixing the price of petroleum products is not under its control.

Also read | Manipur: Direct transfer of COVID relief to begin tomorrow

Earlier, speaking on the calling attention motion, opposition Congress member Keisham Meghachandra Singh accused the BJP government in the state of failing to check price rise of essential commodities.

Speaker Yumnam Khemchand Singh later adjourned the House sine dine. The monsoon session had commenced on Friday.

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