Left seeks Centre's intervention to curb inflation

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New Delhi, Jun 13 (UNI) Concerned over the seven-year high of headline inflation touching 8.75 per cent, the Left parties today sought the Central Government's immediate intervention, saying it should not depend merely on the fiscal and monetary measures as the trend will soon lead to a double-digit inflation.

They deplored that the government had not taken any concrete and positive step so far to curb the soaring inflation as suggested by the Left parties, which included, among others, strengthening of the PDS and imposing a total ban on futures trading in as many as 25 agricultural products.

The Left parties seeking Government intervention came after the headline inflation rate for the week, ended May 31, soared to a seven-year high of 8.75 per cent as compared to 8.24 per cent for the previous week.

CPI leaders A B Bardhan and D Raja told UNI that the matter was of serious concern because whatever fiscal and monetary measures the Government has taken to curb inflation had not yielded results.

''If the inflation is calculated on the basis of the Consumer Index, it will reach the double-digit,'' Mr Bardhan, CPI general secretary, said.

Mr Raja, CPI national secretary and Rajya Sabha MP remarked that the Government seemed to maintain the fiscal and budget deficit at less than three per cent but is not keen to contain inflation.

''Besides, it always blames the global trend of price rise and shy away from taking pro-people economic policies, the result of which has led to this abnormal hike in prices of essential commodities.'' CPI(M) senior leader Rup Chand Pal said the Government had ignored the Left suggestions to contain inflation, which included the roll back of fuel hike and expediting the procurement of food grains.

''We had also suggested to the Government that it is high time to have a relook at the entire issue of subsidy. Instead, the Government has brought down the amount of food subsidy in the budget.'' Mr Pal also said the Government was depending on the monetary measures of the RBI such as repo rate.

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