Is poor salary the reason behind MRP violations?
The reply to an application filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act has shown that the legal metrology department of Tamil Nadu has not found a single case of Maximum Retail Price (MRP) violation at Tamil Nadu State Marketing Corporation (TASMAC) outlets in Chennai in past four years.
In the reply to the application, the department said that it conducted 147 raids in different TASMAC outlets across Chennai since 2009 but no outlet or its staff was booked for violating maximum retail price rules. The reply also shows that the number of raids conducted by the legal metrology department has been continuously increasing every year. The data shows that 11 raids were conducted in 2009-10, while the numbers for 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13 were 23, 35 and 51 respectively. Till May, 2013 the department had conducted 27 raids.
However, a member of TASMAC Workers Federation has admitted that most of the outlets have been charging Rs. 5 to 10 over and above the maximum retail price and blamed it on the meagre salary of the contract workers appointed by the government. On the other hand, TASMAC managing director has said that they have suspended more than 60 employees during Diwali for fleecing customers and that they have also introduced billing machines in 254 outlets for more transparency. Further, separate numbers for registering complaints have been introduced.