BJP shedding croc tears over price hike: MP Cong

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Bhopal, Jun 24 (UNI) Accusing Madhya Pradesh's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of shedding crocodile tears over issues such as inflation and price hike, former Deputy Chief Minister Subhash Yadav today urged the Shivraj Singh Chouhan regime to initiate steps against black marketeers under the Essential Commodites Act, 1955.

Talking to newspersons here, Mr Yadav blamed the predecessor National Democratic Alliance government's ''wrong policies'' for the situation and added that the inflation graph began soaring during NDA tenure.

He claimed that criticism by BJP bigwigs over galloping inflation and price rise of essentials was to defame the Congress. ''The BJP is hatching a conspiracy to defame the Centre's Congress-led United Progressive Alliance regime,'' the former Congress state supremo alleged.

Launching a tirade against the state government, Mr Yadav said that the power situation was worsening and farmers were consequently the sufferers.

''Peasants are receiving only four hours of power a day and the BJP regime is doing nothing to improve the deplorable situation,'' he alleged while urging the government to initiate prompt action in this regard. He also alleged that the Chief Minister has signed several memoranda of understanding with major industrialists but did not take steps to implement them.

Expressing concern over inflation and fuel-price hike, Mr Yadav also invited serious discussions over the issue and has sent memo to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Governor Balram Jakhar and Mr Chouhan with suggestions to curb price hike.

To a question, Mr Yadav denied that any rift with party members was behind his keeping aloof for a prolonged interval. ''I was busy attending problems of my constituency in Khargone district,'' he said.

Meanwhile, the state Congress Election Campaign Committee Chairman Ajay Singh termed use of a bicycle by Mr Chouhan as drama.

''On the one hand, Mr Chouhan is cycling to office while on the other hand the government is extracting Rs 77 crore through taxes on petro-products during this fiscal,'' Mr Singh alleged.

He felt that if Mr Chouhan was really serious about the price hike then he should reduce entry-tax and value-added-tax or at least reduce these taxes for this month to give some relief.

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