As the summer is coming, retailers hike the price of bottled water. They will charge customers Rs 20 for one bottle. The High Court had earlier stayed the government’s order to reduce the price of bottled water to Rs 13 per litre. The single bench stayed the state government’s order because the power to control the price of drinking water under the Food Security Act is within the control of the Central Government.
A case containing 12 bottles of a litre is delivered to the shops by the suppliers for Rs 120. The retailers buy it for between Rs 110 and Rs 95 when the competition increases. At the same time, a bottle is sold to the consumer for Rs 20. Even when it was Rs 13 per litre, the shopkeepers got a profit of around Rs 7 per bottle. Retailers are unable to bargain with multinational brands. Manufacturers say small units face the worst. Dealers say they only get one or two rupees a bottle when the cost of delivery goes up.