Information Minister Hasan Mahmud has said the government is determined to track down the alleged syndicate that is 'playing games' with the price of rawhides and skins of animals sacrificed on Eid-ul-Azha.
The minister made the remarks at a National Mourning Day programme in the National Press Club on Saturday, reports bdnews24.com.
A large part of the demand for leather in Bangladesh is fulfilled through the rawhides of animals sacrificed on Eid. But allegations of the hides being sold for less than the price set by the government has been rampant this Eid.
The situation took a turn for the worse when wholesalers began offering meagre prices for hides or stopped purchasing it entirely. Seasonal traders subsequently dropped their stocks in the streets to rot.
The government then lifted the bar on export of rawhide to ensure reasonable prices, leading to accusations from BNP that it was plotting to destroy the leather industry.
Addressing the ongoing issues surrounding rawhide, Hasan said, "BNP destroyed the country's jute industry. Who shut down the Adamjee Jute Mill?"
The minister instead pointed to the growth in leather exports under the ruling Awami League and blamed a syndicate for the current troubles.
"The purchasing power of Bangladeshi has increased. By comparison, the number of tanneries has not increased. A syndicate is thus playing with the prices of hides. The government is trying to look for those are who involved in this."