Minister of Trade Bandula Gunawardana says the fine of Rs.100,000 for traders selling rice for rates higher than the control price will be imposed after the quarantine curfew is lifted.
Speaking during a media briefing at the Department of Government Information the Trade Minister said stern measures are being taken to provide rice at standard prices for the public.
He noted officials attached to the Consumer Affairs Authority have been directed to seal stocks of paddy illegally stored by intermediaries, and take legal action, without being influenced due to political pressure.
The Minister added stocks will be seized after the Act is passed in Parliament, or the relevant parties can sell the stocks to the Paddy Marketing Board at the certified rate, to be distributed amongst the public.
Minister Gunawardana further said six storages used by intermediaries to store 4 million kilograms of paddy illegally in the Polonnaruwa and Ampara districts, were sealed by the Consumer Affairs Authority this morning.
He added raids in this regard will be carried out continuously.