Mamata urges UPA to adopt alternative policy

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Kolkata, Jun 5(UNI) Demanding reduction in sales tax and cess on petrol, diesel and LPG gas, Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee today urged the UPA Government at the Centre to adopt an alternative policy to protect the people from rising prices of essential commodities.

Coming down heavily on the Congress-led coalition Government, Ms Banerjee, whose party is going for a 12-hour state-wide bandh tomorrow, said it was the "worst one" to have come at the Centre, and it failed to give relief to the common people.

She also ridiculed the CPI(M) for observing a Bangla bandh today on the oil price issue and said it was a show-off and a drama.

'' We are going to observe the strike demanding an alternative plan. The UPA Government must take uniform tax policy and all states should reduce the sales tax, including cess on petrol, diesel and LPG. This would largely solve the problem of the increased prices,'' she told reporters.

Observing that the price of LPG should not increase by more than Rs 10, the Trinamool leader said instead of going for price hike, the government must look for both short and long term policies to spare the people from the additional burden.

'' I have not seen a worse government than that of the UPA....the people have now their backs to the wall. They have to protest,'' she said.

The Trinamool leader also demanded that the Centre take an austerity measure foregoing all kinds of luxuries at the cost of public money and should try to make the country self sufficient in the production of foodgrains and edible oil.

Describing today's bandh as a CPI(M) offer to the people to take a 'casual leave', Ms Banerjee said the Marxist party did not have any moral right to call the strike as it was a part and parcel of the UPA Government.

''The CPI(M), which has taken hundred per cent advantage of being a part and parcel of the UPA Government does not have any moral right to call a bandh. The party knew about the price rise and gave the go ahead to the Centre on one hand while calling a bandh in the state on the other,'' she said.


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