Mousumi on the OMS line with a two-month-old baby in her lap
Moushumi Akhter is a resident of Mirpur-6 area of the capital. At 11:15 am on Monday, the local Chalantika came to the open market by truck in the slum area and stood in the line for the sale of goods (OMS). 1 month 24 days old son Afif Hossain in his arms.
More than one and a half hundred men and women stood in line to buy products at low prices before standing in the seasonal queue. They were fighting over who would stand first. But Shishuputra was standing on one side of the truck, avoiding the rush of monsoons, attracting the attention of the rice-flour sellers in the truck. After trying for more than an hour, he caught the attention of the sellers. Then five kg of rice and two kg of flour were sold to him on special consideration. He collected these products by putting the baby in the lap of another person.
Moushumi Akhter said, “I have never bought products from OMS trucks before.” But the way the prices of goods are increasing in the market, the household expenses can no longer be managed. So forced to buy products at a lower price, today I bought products from the OMS truck for the first time. I came to buy OMS products twice this month. But I could not buy the product after waiting for a long time with a small child in my lap. Today I got the opportunity to buy the first product.
After standing in the OMS line for three days, Mousumi returned home happy to buy the product today. On the way to take the goods, he told Prothom Alo that if the husband’s income increases, he will not have to stand in line with the baby in his lap to buy the goods.
Moushumi Akhter said that her husband works in an electronics shop. His income depends on getting a job. For this, the family runs on loans from local associations and acquaintances. Now the husband’s work has reduced a lot, so he is forced to stand in the OMS queue.
Of course, seasonal flu is not an exception there. Jyotsna Begum and Afia Khatun also came with a one-two month old baby in that area of Chalantika Basti. Eight months pregnant women artists, seventy-something old women Ajifa Begum and Jahanara Begum also came with risk.
Apart from this, low-income men and women of various occupations including day laborers, city corporation workers, rickshaw pullers, housekeepers also come to buy rice and flour from OMS at low prices.
The government has launched the Open Market Sale (OMS) program of rice and flour to help poor families. But now OMS line is getting bigger day by day due to rise in market prices. The middle class is also flocking to the OMS line to buy products at low prices.
The food department sells rice and flour through OMS at government fixed prices. 30 taka per kg of rice and 55 taka of two kg packet flour, 24 taka per kg of open flour. A customer can buy a maximum of five kg of rice and two kg of flour from the OMS truck. It costs Rs. 205. It takes about 400 rupees to buy the same amount of rice and flour from the market.
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