Left parties vow to intensify protests against fuel price hike

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on June 13, 2021

The leaders said that such an increase is happening while the economy is witnessing a deep recession, galloping unemployment and collapsing purchasing power

Five Left parties have decided to hold an all India protest fortnight against the Narendra Modi government from June 16 demanding roll back of fuel price hikes and for controlling the prices of essential commodities and drugs.

The leaders of the parties, including Sitaram Yechury and D Raja, said in a joint statement on Sunday that more assaults on people’s livelihood are being mounted by the relentless rise in prices of all essential commodities.

“Instead of helping people to combat the ravages of the Covid health catastrophe, the Modi government hiked the prices of petroleum products by at least 21 times after the announcement of results of the recent assembly elections on May 2, 2021. This is leading to a cascading inflationary spiral with the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) rising to a eleven year high,” they said.

The Left parties added that the prices of food articles have risen by nearly five per cent in April.

“Primary commodities saw a rise of 10.16 per cent and manufactured products have risen by 9.01 per cent. By the time these commodities reach the retail markets, the consumers are charged much more,” the statement added.

The leaders said that such an increase is happening while the economy is witnessing a deep recession, galloping unemployment, collapsing purchasing power and rising levels of hunger.

Charge of hoarding

“Clearly, unscrupulous black-marketing and hoarding is taking place under state patronage. The Modi government must crack down on such black-marketing, especially of essential drugs, vital for people’s survival,” they said and reiterated the demand for direct cash transfers of ₹7,500 per month for six months to all families not in the income tax paying bracket.

The provisions such as five kilograms of foodgrains is completely inadequate and it should be increased to 10 kilograms foodgrains per month to all individuals including a food kit with pulses, edible oil, sugar, spices, tea etc and must be distributed free. “Given the Covid conditions and the necessity to strictly adhere to the precautions and protocol, the Left parties call upon their state units to conduct these protests in the concrete conditions obtaining in their states during this fortnight,” they added.

Published on June 13, 2021

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