Inflation itches Govt; more steps likely to contain prices | india | Hindustan Times
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Inflation itches Govt; more steps likely to contain prices

india Updated: Jun 23, 2006 16:07 IST
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Surging prices of wheat, sugar, pulses and vegetables, besides increased fuel prices, have pushed inflation past the five per cent mark, even as Finance Minister P Chidambaram sought to address the concern saying government would take all possible steps to stem prices.

Amid growing outrage over the spiraling prices of essential items that has hit the common man hard, the Finance Minister attributed the inflationary pressures to increase in fuel prices announced earlier this month.

Wholesale price-based inflation shot up to 5.24 per cent for the week ended June 10 from 4.72 per cent in the previous week and 4.5 per cent in the corresponding week last year.

"We will take more monetary and fiscal steps if needed to curb inflation," Chidambaram said.

Government had hiked petrol and diesel prices by Rs 4 and Rs 2 respectively on June 5 due to high global oil prices.

"Current spurt in inflation was due to pass through of fuel prices," he said.

Sensing trouble over high inflation, the Government on Thursday allowed unrestricted import of wheat, pulses and sugar to ease price situation.

Chidambaram said, "Monetary steps have been taken, some fiscal steps and action were announced on Thursday … I am confident these steps will help moderate inflation."

However, analysts said inflation could be higher for the coming weeks when the full effect of fuel price hike will get reflected on products due to increase in transport cost and given that imports will take time to materialise.

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