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Cong answer to BJP blitzkrieg: FM

delhi Updated: Nov 25, 2008 23:29 IST
HT Correspondent

With the issue of price rise putting the biggest question mark on its electoral success, the Congress on Tuesday brought the man who has all the answers.

In a Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee press conference on Tuesday, Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said that though inflation is definitely an election issue, things are under control.

“Inflation is under reasonable control and we are sure that it is going to come down,” Chidambaram said.

Dressed in his familiar ‘vesti’ and with a shawl wrapped around his shoulders, this was the first time he was speaking at
Rajiv Bhawan — the DPCC headquarters .

As the Bharatiya Janata Party is inviting its political stars to campaign for the Delhi assembly elections, Congress too is following suit.

Speaking in his usual gentle but persuasive style, Chidambaram said that recession is a wrong word to use in the Indian context. “Economies of UK, US, Germany are in recession. Our Gross Domestic Product is showing growth,” he said, while admitting that the Indian economy has slowed down.

“However, people’s income has increased and in Delhi more than anywhere else,” he said.

He blamed the rising prices of all commodities on the steady increase in price of crude oil. “During the NDA rule, the price of crude oil was 27 dollars per barrel but it has now reached 127 dollars per barrel,” he said.

Reacting to the BJP’s charge that prices have gone up during the Congress rule in Delhi, he said that there is no point in comparing prices in 2008 to 2004. “Prices depend on supply and demand and also international development,” he said.

Though Chidambaram said he is ready to campaign for Delhi elections, Aggarwal said that he could reach more people by addressing the media. “Media will go to every house, how many people can he meet by participating in public meetings?” he said.