New Delhi: Setting the stage for an intense discussion on the crucial issue of spiraling prices of essential commodities, the main Opposition party, BJP, on Wednesday tabled a resolution in Parliament in this regard.
Opening the debate in Lok Sabha, senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha said, “This House has been forced to discuss the burden of inflation imposed on the Aam Admi. This is the 12th time probably that we are discussing the subject in the Parliament. However, twelve rounds of discussions have also not yielded any concrete results.”
“Despite the debate there is no relief to the common man and the government should ensure that there should not be any need to further debate the issue,” he said.
He said his party had urged the government to overcome its inertia and provide relief to the common man.
“This would serve as an antidote for the growing economic imbalances in the country,” he added
“This House calls upon the government to take some immediate steps to check inflation, which will bring some respite to the common man. It has now become imperative for the government to do something to check price rise,” he urged.
The former finance minister pointed out that no wants the growth of economy, if the people are dying of hunger and poverty. To drive his point home, the BJP leader further cited a report by CRISIL, which says that in last three years, inflation has triggered the domestic budget spending to Rs 6 lakh crores.
The BJP leader also referred to a report by the Asian Development Bank, which states that in India, an additional five crore people have been pushed to live Below Poverty Line (BPL) due to sky rocketing inflation.
Asking the UPA regime to curb inflation, Sinha said, “The worst form of taxation on poor is price rise, which also indicates that the government‘s food pricing mechanism has failed to improve the situation.”
Sinha further referred to an observation by the Parliament’s Standing Committee on price rise, which states “The government has failed to intervene timely and squarely to take measure to control the pricing regime. This situation calls for a comprehensive food pricing and inflation control management system to ensure that the situation never goes out of hand.”
Taking a dig at the UPA government, the Opposition leader said in spite of taking some actions the ruling regime has been blaming the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for failing to rein in spiraling prices.
Sinha lamented that approximately 6.5 crores tones of food grains is lying unutilized in government’s storage facilities and is rotting. “Even the Supreme Court has taken cognizance of the situation and directed the government to ensure that it must be distributed among the extreme poor and the downtrodden, “ he added.
Going a step further, Sinha stated that BJP can tell the UPA government what all should be done to control price rise in just two months.
The debate on the issue of price rise will be followed by voting on a resolution. An agreement on this was reached between the government and opposition yesterday after two days of ruckus in both Houses over the issue.
However, with the BJP and Congress agreeing to pass the resolution, the Left has cried foul saying that the main two parties are two sides of the same coin and hence a division of votes should be carried out so as to know who stands where on the issue.
From the government’s side, the response would come from Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.
The Rajya Sabha would be discussing the issue next week.