The consumer price index (CPI)- a metric used to measure inflation, increased in January, 2023 for agricultural and rural labourers mainly due to increased prices of medicine, barber charges, bus fare, washing shop, etc. The All-India CPI increased by 3 and 2 points to stand at 1170 and 1181 points respectively. The maximum upward pressure on the general index of agricultural labourers and rural labourers came from the miscellaneous group to the extent of 0.68 and 0.63 points respectively. Rising inflation often results in a diminishing standard of living for the people and over a period of time, it also effects the cost of living.
Used for various purposes
In India, many types of CPIs are compiled for different population target groups. These index numbers, apart from being of great importance to policymakers and researchers, are also utilized by various ministries, departments and state governments for different purposes. . These indices are also helpful in measuring the inflationary trend in the country, which has been a concern for the government as well as people in general.
Index varies from state to state
The rise and fall in index varied from state to state. In case of agricultural labourers, it recorded an increase of 2 to 6 points in 14 states and a decrease of 1 to 12 points in 6 states. Tamilnadu with 1356 points topped the index table whereas Himachal Pradesh with 914 points stood at the bottom. Rural labourers recorded an increase of 1 to 7 points in 13 states and a decrease of 1 to 12 points in 7 states. Tamilnadu with 1345 points topped the index table whereas Himachal Pradesh with 960 points stood at the bottom.
Maximum increase in Andhra Pradesh
Amongst states, the maximum increase in the Consumer Price Index number for agricultural labourers was experienced by Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu State with 6 points each and for rural labourers by Tamil Nadu state with 7 points mainly due to the rise in the prices of wheat-atta, jowar, bajra, onion, vegetables & fruits, firewood, etc. On the contrary, the maximum decrease in the Consumer Price Index numbers for agricultural labourers and rural labourers was experienced by Assam state with 12 points each mainly due to fall in the prices of rice, fish-fresh, chillies green, vegetables & fruits, etc.
Rate of inflation based on CPI-AL
Point to point rate of inflation based on the CPI-AL and CPI-RL stood at 6.85% & 6.88% in January, 2023 compared to 6.38% & 6.60% respectively in December, 2022 and 5.49% and 5.74% respectively during the corresponding month of the previous year. Similarly, food inflation stood at 6.61% and 6.47% in January, 2023 compared to 5.89% & 5.76% respectively in December, 2022 and 4.15% & 4.33% respectively during the corresponding month of the previous year.
Earlier, the Consumer Price Index numbers for rural, urban and combined for the month of December 2022 were released. The price data are collected from selected 1114 urban markets and 1181 villages covering all states/UTs through personal visits by field staff of the Field Operations Division of NSO, MoSPI on a weekly roster. During the month of December 2022, NSO collected prices from 99.9% of villages and 98.6% of urban markets while the market-wise prices reported therein were 90.7% for rural and 93.6% for urban.