Days, months, and years have passed, and the commotion of news of the disastrous situation in Iran is flying over this country followed by a long and unending tale.
The coronavirus pandemic has joined this commotion beside the high prices, poverty, and unemployment. The state-run outlets and websites are trying to analyze this situation each of them in its own way, trying to give hopefully statistics to whitewash the hands of the officials from all the misery that they brought for the people. But the situation is not reversible and this downward spiral is not stopping its rotation.
This situation is sometimes more in consideration due to the change of the seasons, like the Persian New Year ‘Nowruz’, the start of the educational season, or days like ‘Shab-e-Yalda’, and the start of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. But these considerations have only the purpose of being a news or just a report, and after days its flames become quiet, and the people are left alone with the high prices, inflation, and liquidity.
About one year and four months have passed since the distribution and dissemination of the coronavirus by Iran’s government. During this period, it is uncountable how many jobs are lost, incomes are cut off and who many families are in need of a minimum subsistence; But the mullahs’ system shamelessly gives official statistics that only 60 percent of Iranians need subsidies.
Meanwhile many state media outlets have reported that more than 80 percent of the people are living under the poverty line and cannot make a living even with the government subsidies.
And the Ramadan of this year is one of the subjects of the repeating reports by these outlets, giving some statistics which are worse than the previous years and which show that there has been no improvement in the lives of the people.
The state-run daily Ebtekar on April 15 wrote: “The month of Ramadan has begun, and the prices of used items are rising more than ever, and rising prices in the face of declining incomes have made households even more worried. These days, we are witnessing a flight in the prices of basic goods, goods that play an important and fundamental role in the household shopping basket and their removal can threaten their health.”
While the poverty line in Iran is growing exponentially and has plagued many households, especially during the coronavirus pandemic, the skyrocketing price of protein has doubled the pressure on the livelihoods of the people.
“Red meat is one of the basic commodities whose price increase has caused this commodity to be removed from the consumption basket of the lower and even middle decile of the society. According to the price list of fruit and vegetable fields, the price of each kilogram of fresh calf thigh is 121 thousand Tomans. On the other hand, the most consumed protein of families is chicken, which has faced a shortage and increase in price, so that its approved price is 24,900 Tomans per kilo, while it is sold at higher prices in the market.” (State-run daily Ebtekar, April 15, 2021)
And the government’s brokers and merchants have not shown their mercy even to the most consumed product of the Iranian people which is rice and cut off the hands of millions from this basic food item.
“Rice has experienced a significant increase in price over the past year, so that the cheapest foreign rice on the market is Indian rice (long grain) which is sold at a price of 19,000 tomans, Iranian rice is priced up to 40,000 tomans.” (State-run daily Ebtekar, April 15, 2021)
And the traditional foods of Ramadan are victims of this corrupted policy too: “Rising prices for basic commodities, while prices for items such as dates, Jalebi and tulumba have also risen sharply compared to previous years, making it difficult for the lower and middle deciles to get past Ramadan.” (State-run daily Ebtekar, April 15, 2021)