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BJP submits memo to PM on price rise
Published on 21 Jan. 2010 12:49 AM IST
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Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader L.K. Advani Wednesday met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Wednesday and expressed concern over the the skyrocketing prices of essential commodities that have impacted not just those in the below poverty line (BPL) category but “almost the entire middle class”. A high-level BJP delegation, led by Advani and party president Nitin Gadkari, Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj, her counterpart in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley and other senior leaders met the prime minister at his 7, Race Course Road residence and submitted a memorandum on rising prices of sugar and essential commodities. “The prime minister assured us of all possible measures to control prices and also to examine the suggestions given by us,” Advani told reporters after the meeting. He said the delegation met the prime minister to “convey the concern of the people” on the rising prices of the food articles. “Not merely the weaker sections and BPL families but the entire middle class is affected by inflation, particularly of food articles,” Advani said. Former BJP president Rajnath Singh, Ananth Kumar and S.S. Ahluwalia were also part of the delegation. Gadkari said the wrong polices of the UPA government had caused the price rise. He also criticised the central government for placing the responsibility of price rise on the state governments. The BJP said in its memorandum: “The worst affected have been the economically weaker sections and families of a large number of workers in unorganised sectors in our society who are most adversely affected due to the increase in the food prices as their wages have not commensurated with the price rise being witnessed over such a long period.” “The prices of wheat, rice, cereals, pulses and vegetables have soared exceptionally high. The need of the hour is for the government to have a comprehensive food pricing and management policy in order to provide relief to the common man,” it said. The BJP said the Department of Consumer Affairs, which is the nodal department to deal with the consumer prices, has miserably failed to discharge its responsibility. “It is disheartening that the approach of the government has been insensitive,” the party said referring to the recent statement of Food and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, who had said that he was not an astrologer to predicting when the food prices would come down. “The government is resorting to a ‘do nothing approach’ in the hope that the problems will resolve on their own. The essential coordination required between different departments of the government appears to be lacking.” “This is not the time for apportioning the blame game between various ministries of the government. This is a time for action since the inflationary trends have caused enormous misery to the common man,” the BJP said in the memorandum.

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