Hyderabad: In an attempt to curb overpricing, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food, and Public Distribution has announced that masks should not be sold at more than Rs 10.

Making a distinction between the 2-ply and 3-ply surgical masks, the department of Consumer Affairs said the retail prices of 3-ply surgical masks shall not be more than Rs 10, and price of 2-ply surgical masks shall not exceed Rs 8.

The department has fixed the price of hand sanitizers as well. In the notification released on March 21, the consumer affairs department said: “The retail prices of hand sanitizer shall not be more than Rs 100 per bottle of 200 ml.”

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The department has also regulated the prices of raw materials used in mask production including melt-blown non-woven fabric. The retail prices of the fabric cannot be more than the rates fixed on February 12, 2020.

These prices will remain in force till June 30, 2020.

Earlier on March 13, the central government had categorized masks and sanitizers under the Essential Commodities Act (ECA), due to an increase in demand and hoarding of these products.

The department had exercised the powers by invoking sub-section 2A and section 3 of the ECA, 1955

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