Members of the Congress sold tomatoes for Rs 10 a kg outside the Uttar Pradesh Assembly in Lucknow on Friday to protest against rising vegetable prices, ANI reported. The price of tomatoes has risen to more than Rs 100 a kg in several cities because of a supply shortage in wholesale markets.

On Thursday, the Congress had set up what it called the “State Bank of Tomato”, which offers loans to buy the vegetable, PTI reported. The centre is being operated out of the Youth Congress office in Lucknow.

One of the schemes lets residents deposit as many tomatoes as they can afford, and offers them double the quantity in return. Other offers from the bank include tomato EMIs. “We have got some 11 kgs of tomatoes deposited with us and have given away one-and-a-half kgs on loan, for which the buyer will pay us back in installments of Rs 10 each,” Anshu Awasthi, the bank’s “chief manager”, told PTI.

Heavy rain across Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan has damaged the tomato crop this year, causing prices to soar by more than four times since June, Business Today reported.