Shakir Hussain, a resident of Karachi, is part of more than half of Pakistan’s population that was already mired in poverty and now the recent surge in inflation has broken his back. He says that the price of what he used to buy for one thousand rupees a year ago has now reached more than two thousand rupees. “Every time I go to the market, I am reminded of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s statement that if inflation rises, it should be understood that the Prime Minister is a thief,” said Shakir, who came to the Sunday market with the intention of purchasing essential items at low prices. “If inflation rises, it should be understood that the Prime Minister is a thief,” he repeated. The recent surge in inflation in Pakistan has affected every section of the country, but the middle class and low-income families seem to be the hardest hit. During a survey, the fruit and vegetable seller told the Daily Times that they have now started telling the price of vegetables and fruits on a grams basis instead of a kilo so that consumers can buy something. He said that people who used to buy things on the basis of kg now buy 250 grams or half a kg. According to the results of a survey conducted by Daily Times on Sunday, prices of essential kitchen items have shown a mixed trend over the past week when compared to the previous week. The prices of the best quality cooking oil and ghee remained stable, while the prices of B-grade cooking oil brands remained stable in the retail market. Since December 2020, the price of ghee and cooking oil has increased significantly. Wheat flour prices remained stable this week, with a 10kg bag of high-quality wheat flour being sold for Rs 900 in the retail market. The retail price of sugar, which was at an all-time high just five weeks ago, is now Rs100 to 110 per kg. Prices of sugar are falling as a result of the beginning of the crushing season and the government’s intervention in the market by supplying imported commodities at Rs90 per kilogram through the Utility Stores outlets and temporary/mobile outlets. Sugar prices are expected to remain on the low side until March 2022 due to ample supplies, but big dealers will be able to take advantage of the situation in accordance with global market trends after that. As a whole, the prices of vegetables have dropped, in retail, the prices of potatoes, onions, and tomatoes are all selling for less than they did a couple of weeks ago, while the prices of other vegetables have risen. Peas are available at an unbelievable price of over Rs 400 per kg. The price of cucumbers has risen from Rs70 per kg to Rs75 per kg in the last week. Garlic prices have risen from Rs130-280 per kg to Rs170-300 per kg in the past week, compared to Rs130-280 per kg last week. The price of ginger has fallen to Rs300 per kg, down from Rs325 per kg last week. From Rs500 to Rs550 per 5kg, the price of capsicum went up from Rs125 to Rs130 per kg; fresh beans, on the other hand, are being sold at Rs80 per kg compared to Rs75 per kg last week. The survey found that the retail price of chicken rose from Rs 300 per kg to Rs 380 per kg. The price of eggs remained at Rs 210 per dozen, unchanged. During the week, as the weather in Karachi became colder, the prices of all fruits saw a significant increase in their prices.