Center to cut duties on food items: Kamal Nath

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New Delhi, Mar 31: Union Commerce Minister Kamal Nath on Monday said that the Central Government has decided to slash duties on the entire range of food items to contain the rising prices.

Inflation rate zoomed to a 13-month high of 6.68 per cent during week ended March 15. "With a very steep increase in international prices, the supply side is being affected and our imported duties have to be calibrated in response to international prices so with international prices being steep we are looking towards cutting our duties on the food front, on edible oils, on a whole range of products," said Kamal Nath. "In fact to bring them to zero we have to ensure that the price rise here is maintained and is not affected by global price increase," he added.

Earlier today taking a potshot at the UPA Government before its Cabinet Committee of Prices meets later this evening to discuss ways to arrest the inflationary prices of essential items, the BJP accused it of mismanaging the national food buffer stock, and suggested that Parliament must be taken into confidence to resolve an impending crisis.

The BJP said the Planning Commission figures have revealed that today the country's per capita availability of food grains has fallen to the levels of 1970s.


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