How to celebrate festivals with steep price-rise?

"One of the election promises of Narendra Modi was to put a cap on price-rise. But exact opposite is happening in reality. For instance, within past 4 months the cost of 'arhar dal' has doubled up from Rs 100 to Rs 200 per kg. Common people of India who earn their livelihood on daily basis are struggling to meet their ends and earn enough to bear the cost of dal (a major source of protein) in daily diet of their family! It is a sordid reminder that half of our children are malnourished. With inability to feed protein-rich dal, there is a big risk of these malnourished children slipping into hunger and severely malnourished category" said Dr Sandeep Pandey, Magsaysay Awardee and Vice President of Socialist Party (India).

Dr Pandey was leading a major demonstration against price rise in Uttar Pradesh state capital, Lucknow.

"A common person is even struggling to feed her family with bread (roti) and vegetables as cost of onion has doubled up from Rs 30-35/kg to Rs 60/kg. Likewise cost of most vegetables has gone up manifold. It appears as if government has devised a new way of ending poverty - finishing off with poor people!"

"Despite the fact how steep price-rise is making life difficult for a majority of our people, this issue is not in the discussion or spotlight. This issue is not even central for Bihar elections. Perhaps just to distract people from important grave issues, Dadri-type event take place so that common people remain wholly engaged in debates around cow and meat" said Girish Kumar Pande, a senior leader from Socialist Party (India).

"The plight of farmers is appalling. Farmers are not even getting minimum support price for their crop yield due to middle-men and corruption. To make matters worse, extreme weather conditions (for which rich communities with manifold consumption patterns are responsible) due to which farmers' crop yield suffers have made it very difficult for them to make both ends meet. Government has failed to provide adequate compensation to all the farmers who faced loss of crop yield or families of those who committed suicide. Insurance companies have also vanished from the scene. The question is, what do these companies insure farmers for? This is a strange paradox that on one hand farmers are failing to get their dues for crop yield, but on another hand, price of their farm produce is shooting up astronomically for common consumers! This is not a hidden fact that business community is a strong supporter of BJP. Which means that since 'Achchhe Din' times began with BJP led government middle men have been garnering huge benefits!" said Pande.

Citizen News Service (CNS)
21 October 2015

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