Spiraling Prices: Who’s Responsible?

Who is responsible for the spiraling process?

Hoarders, politicians, government-both at centre and in the states, traders, farmers or the people of the country!

How is this country with more than 70% of the population without any salary cheques coming every month carrying on with this tremendous price rises? As reported, ‘food inflation touched 17.40 per cent for the week ended January 16 on account of high prices of vegetables and pulses.’ Is it not strange that pulses are selling at Rs 100 to 110 per kg, higher than the price of branded refined edible oils?

As reported, ‘the prices of essential commodities have been on an upward spiral since 2004. In the last decade, rice prices have risen by 130 per cent cent while sugar prices have shot up by 193 per cent. And since May 2004, prices of rice have gone up by 77 per cent and that of tur dal by an astounding 252 per cent.’

India is unfortunate to have one so senior a minister who keeps on giving irresponsible and every time varying statements, more on possibility of the rise in the price rather than acting on and talking about the measures on the price control.

Is it because of the politics even in matters of grave national concerns? As per one estimate, the government spent about Rs1.25, 000 crore very successfully for its vote banks such a loan waivers and NREGA. It hardly executed any major irrigation programme for improving the productivity in agriculture. Would not the country have debated the choice between the investments for vote banks vs. that in improving the productivity of agriculture sector? Who can stop a government from allocating most of its revenue for appeasing the vote banks?

And what can happen if the concern of the politicians leading protests for price rise is so much political?

“Take us and keep us in 1 Anne Marg (chief minister’s official residence). I will issue an order to bring down the prices within a minute,” Lalu claimed when the police arrived to arrest him during recent Patna Bandh.

And another chief minister has funnier solution. He can stop price rise by writing a letter on rising prices to the Congress president in Italian to get her attention.

Why do the politicians and the government behave so irresponsibly? They have nothing to lose. They have their store rooms and lockers full. And still the crowd is with them and votes them to power. Is not the country is getting what it deserves?

Let us not hope for any control on prices of the essential commodities, be it sugar or onion or pulses and try to live with it, work harder to pay more for the ineffectiveness of the governance.

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