Friday, April 9, 2010
Belated decision to combat sky-rocketing prices of aricultural goods
When much water has flown down the Yamuna, Manmohan Singh- led UPA govt. has woken up to take decision to combat shooting prices of all commodities. PM sets up three working groups of chief ministers. The decision to set up the working groups was taken after the meeting of core committee comprising 10 chief ministers, senior Cabinet ministers and Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia.The Centre has also decided to involve the states in dealing with the price situation at a time when the both are blaming each other for rising food inflation, which soared to 17.70 per cent.The first working group on agriculture production will be headed by Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and will comprise chief ministers of Punjab, West Bengal and Bihar.Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi will head the working group on consumer affairs. It will have Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh chief ministers as members.The third working on food and public distribution will be headed by Ahluwalia and will include chief ministers of Chhattisgarh, Assam and chairman of Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council (PMEAC) C Rangarajan as members.The working groups will submit their reports in two months.When the opposition BJP announced of holding nation-wide rally against the shooting prices of all edible and agricultural goods, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh has held a high-level meeting on alarming price-rise and chalked out with the chief ministers of states a plan to contain it before it goes out of hand. If the people continued to suffer back-breaking price-rise of all edible and essential commodities without any viable measures to check them by the government, they might translate their anger at its total failure on the front of sky-rocketing prices into their anti-ruling party voting in coming general elections.At last, the opposition BJP has cast off its lethergy and complacency to give direction of its policies and programmes as the main opposition party has also decided to attack the government to soothe the painful feeling of the people caused by sky-rocketing prices and win their confidence. The setting up of working group of chief ministers to combat shooting prices of agricultural commodities is good but one thing is to be ensured that these decisions must not remain confined to office file and speeches of ruling party leaders. There is urgent need for the govt. to act to give results and that should be clearly visible on the ground. The Centre and the states must co-ordinate with each other smoothly to fight run away prices of all commodities. The Public Distribution Systems in the country are in a shambles. The black marketeers, profiteers and hoaders are ruling the roost. Several state governments deliberately ignore to conduct raids at their godowns because of some vested interests. The Centre has also the responsibility of smoothly monitering the supply and demands of the market.