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?UPA will pay if it ignores issues?

THE UPA government will pay a political price if it keeps ignoring issues of the common masses, CPM general secretary Prakash Karat said here on Sunday.

india Updated: Sep 04, 2006 01:17 IST

THE UPA government will pay a political price if it keeps ignoring issues of the common masses, CPM general secretary Prakash Karat said here on Sunday.

The CPM is mobilising people’s support through its political campaign across the country to create the necessary pressure on the Centre, Karat said, making it clear that his party is not a custodian of the UPA government.

Skirting questions whether left parties would withdraw  support to the UPA, he said the government was not ignoring all their suggestions. The left parties have managed to mount enough pressure on the government to prevent some decisions that could have harmed the common people. However the government has not kept its words on many issues and hence the CPM decided to take the alternative policies of the left to the people and mobilise their opinion, he said.

Calling escalating prices a major concern, Karat said rising petroleum price was one of the major reasons. The CPM has presented a five-point proposal to the government to amend the tax structure, mainly scrapping the ad valorem structure (levying of tax in proportion to the estimated value of goods or transactions). The left parties will put their foot down till the government acts on these proposals, he said.

The left is also pushing the government to review the futures trading policy as it is benefiting some big traders and business houses. Since Congress president Sonia Gandhi has expressed reservations on the policy, there are possibilities of
things moving, Karat said.

The left leader said the public distribution system (PDS) should strengthened considering the price hike in open market. The government however is dealing double blow to common people by cutting down on allotments – mainly wheat – to states. Expressing reservations about the special economic zone policy, Karat said only 25 percent of the land was being used for
industrial purpose and the rest diverted for real estate.

Since farmers’ land is being lost, the left is pressuring government to review this policy. Karat said the Centre should take a firm stand on tribal land rights, 33 percent reservation for women and independent foreign policy. On terrorism, he said intelligence needs to be strengthened and coordination between investigative agencies improved for curbing rising incidents.


‘CBI inquiry into Ujjain must’
Surprised at chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan statement before the CID probe into Ujjain incident was over, he reieterated his party demand for a CBI inqury into the violence leading to Prof H S Sabharwal’s  death.

Doubting the sincerity of the government to act the Madhav College violence, he said an unbiased enquiry would bring the culprits to book. He said the MP Government is not doing enough for the flood relief. Survey is also not being done properly in the state capital which was one of the worst hit. The state government should make more efforts to reach out to the fllod-hit and the Centre provide adequate relief not only to MP but other affected states, Karat said