People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 29

July 19, 2009



Check The Unabated Rise In Prices Of Foodstuffs



The CPI(M), Delhi State Committee has issued the following statement on July 16, 2009:


 The CPI(M), Delhi State Committee condemns the utterly callous attitude of the Delhi state government to the unabated rise in prices of foodstuffs in the state. The prices of dals and vegetables are going through the roof, causing untold hardships to lakhs of wage earners and poor. The prices of arhar dal have almost doubled over the past one year, from Rs 44 per kg to Rs 80 per kg. Other dals like masur, urad and rajma have also gone up steeply. The prices of sugar have also doubled in one year from Rs 14 per kg to Rs 28 per kg. The same is true for vegetables. This gives lie to the tall claims of the UPA government about falling rates of inflation.


Steep rise in prices of especially dals and sugar is the result of illegal forward trading and hoarding by big traders. The Delhi government is squarely guilty of not taking any action against these criminal elements. The refusal of the UPA government to undo retrograde changes in the Essential Commodities Act made by the NDA government is facilitating hoarding and blackmarketeering. The UPA government has left no stone unturned to destroy the public distribution system. As per its norms only those are eligible to be in the BPL category whose annual family income is Rs 24,200 or less! Crores of poor in the country have thus been deprived of cheap rations. The further emasculation of the public distribution system through recent reduction in foodgrain quotas for the BPL and Antodaya categories and increase in rates of foodgrains for Antodaya families has made the situation even worse for lakhs of poor in Delhi. This brazen anti-people policy cannot be accepted.


The CPI(M) therefore, demands:

i.                    Provision of dals at cheap rates through the public distribution system. 

ii.                  Provision of sugar through public distribution system to both APL and BPL card holders.

iii.                Reintroduction of universal public distribution system to provide cheap rations for all.

iv.               Crackdown on hoarders and blackmarketeers.

v.                 Amendments to the Essential Commodities Act for removing provisions that encourage hoarding and blackmarketeering.