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Cong CMs' meet tomorrow to discuss rising prices

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, July 4: Concerned at the soaring prices of essential commodities, Congress President Sonia Gandhi has convened a meeting of all the 14 Chief Ministers of the party-ruled states here tomorrow to consider ways and means to contain the continuing trend.

This comes close on the heels of the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting held here on June 29 when the highest policy-making body of the Congress expressed concern over the growing trend of the prices and directed the government to take effective measures.

The Chief Ministers' Meeting is in pursuance of the suggestion made by Members of the CWC to take stock of the measures taken by the Chief Ministers to arrest the rising trend.

During the daylong meeting, likely to be attended by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister P Chidambaram, the Chief Ministers may be directed to take measures efectively against hoarding and profiteering to help bring down the prices of essential commodities.

Congress sources clarified that tomorrow's meeting was not a Chief Ministers' conclave but a meeting of the Congress Chief Ministers. This would be followed by a Chief Ministers' Conclave, the second since the UPA government came to power, to be held in a couple of months after the monsoon session of Parliament is over.

Tomorrow's meeting is the first of its kind since the Congress-led UPA government came to power at the Centre more than two years ago.

The Congress Chief Ministers had earlier been directed by the party leadership to reduce sales tax on the petrol price hike of Rs 4 to provide relief to the common man.

The Congress Party's concern over the price rise is viewed in the context of the attack launched against it by the Opposition BJP and the Left supporting the UPA Government from outside as also the approaching Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, Uttaranchal and Punjab.

UNI

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