CPI demands resumption of work on Sethu project

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{image-Ram Setu010_18012008.jpg www.oneindia.com}Chennai, Jan 18: The National Council of the CPI today demanded the Centre to take steps to quickly restart the Sethusamudram Shipping Canal Project (SSCP) and expeditiously complete it. A resolution passed on the second day of the council here today, said the project was of national importance and would have a positive impact on the Indian economy as a whole.

Expressing concern over the project coming to a standstill midway, it said the Centre should take all steps to vacate the stay in the Supreme court to enable continuance of the project and complete it within the stipulated time frame. Another resolution urged the Centre to immediately repeal the Amendments brought to the Essential Commodities Act by the erstwhile BJP-led NDA government enabling private traders to stockpile food grains and manipulate the market price.

Alleging that the country was in the grip of unprecedented price rise for more than two years, it said there was total collapse of the public distribution system. The state quota has been reduced and materials allotted for PDS were smuggled into the black market.

Condemning the inaction of the government in this regard, it urged the government to immediately take steps in collaboration with state governments to curb price rise, restore the universal public distribution system in its totality, stop the banks from advancing loans for food trading and apply a stringent essential commodities act.

''As a long-term strategy, the Centre should restore the food security of the nation, revive agriculture, increase agricultural production, take steps for adequate food procurement and offer remunerative price to the farmers for their food articles,'' it added. Another resolution urged the Centre to restore the ration quota of rice and wheat to Kerala.

UNI

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