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Left parties to hold 15-day protest against rising prices of fuel, essential commodities, drugs

In joint statement, parties say 16-30 June protest will also demand control of prices of essential commodities, and Rs 7,500 per month direct cash transfer to families not in income tax-paying bracket.

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New Delhi: Left Parties will hold a fortnight nationwide protest starting from Wednesday against the rising prices of fuel, essential commodities and medicines.

Left Parties including the Communist Party of India (Marxist), Communist Party of India, All India Forward Bloc, Revolutionary Socialist Party and Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist)-Liberation have issued a joint statement on Sunday.

According to the statement, the protest will start on June 16 and end on June 30. The parties demand the central government to roll back increased fuel price and control the prices of essential commodities and drugs.

“More assaults on people’s livelihood are being mounted by this relentless rise in prices of all essential commodities. Instead of helping people to combat the ravages of the COVID health catastrophe, the Narendra Modi government hiked the prices of petroleum products by at least 21 times after the announcement of the results of the recent assembly elections on May 2, 2021,” alleged the Left parties.

“This is leading to a cascading inflationary spiral with the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) rising to an eleven-year high. The prices of food articles have risen by nearly 5 per cent in April. Primary commodities saw a rise of 10.16 per cent and manufactured products have risen by 9.01 per cent. By the time these commodities reach the retail markets, the consumers are charged much more,” reads the Left parties’ joint statement.

Left parties said the price rise is occurring at a time when the economy has been witnessing a “deep recession, galloping unemployment, collapsing purchasing power and rising levels of hunger”.

“Clearly, unscrupulous black-marketing and hoarding is taking place under state patronage. Modi government must strictly crackdown on such black-marketing especially of essential drugs, vital for people’s survival,” the statement further said.

Left parties demanded that the central government must immediately give direct cash transfers of Rs 7,500 per month for six months to all families not falling in the income tax-paying bracket.

Left parties directed their state unit to hold protests during the fortnight while adhering to the COVID precautions and protocols.

Fuel prices continue to soar across India as petrol prices have breached Rs 100 mark in many states. –ANI

Also read: Cut petrol, diesel taxes to ease inflation, RBI’s monetary policy panel tells Modi govt, states


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