No stopping inflation as it soars to 11.42 per cent

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New Delhi, Jun 27 (UNI) The headline inflation rate for the week ended June 14 soared to a 13-year high of 11.42 per cent as compared to 11.05 per cent for the previous week, causing the BSE to tumble by 619 points today to end at this year's lowest level.

A poll-geared BJP immediately attacked a ''tottering UPA'' for its inablity to rein in spiralling prices even as the government said it had taken a series of fiscal and monetary measures.

The Bombay Stock Exchange plunged by 619.60 points to close at its lowest level this year at 13,802.22, whill the Nifty index tumbled by 179.20 points to end at 4,136.65 following negative global cues and runaway inflation.

Congress AICC spokesman Shakeel Ahmed told reporters that Finance Minister P Chidambaram had already explained that prices would start coming down only in August and considerable relief was expected only in September.

But for the series of fiscal and monetary steps taken by the government and the RBI, inflation would have been much higher, in consonance with the levels of rise in other Asian nations, he reasoned.

While inflation was a cause for concern, the BJP was happy over people's sufferings, expecting to make political gains, he regretted.

However, a combative BJP with an eye on impending Lok Sabha polls, flayed the government. Party Spokesperson Ravishankar Prasad said the UPA government had mismanaged food and oil economy.

''We have a sulking Prime Minister and a tottering government where a divorce is being planned and the terms of maintenance finalised,'' he said.

He said the Centre did possess enough flexibility to take anti-inflationary measures. and recalled Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar's claim that the the government had procured 220 lakh tonnes of food grains. ''Our question is that if this is true, why are these stocks not being distributed to the poor to surmount surging prices.'' ''The government has the flexibility but no political will to help the poor is a case of rank mismanagement by a negligent government whose sole concern is to survive at all costs,'' he added.


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