Saturday, October 11, 2008

Prices under control: YSR

Prices under control: YSR
Chief Minister YSR favours polls in February-March
HYDERABAD: Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy is of the view that the ation was well under control and rise in the cost of certain essential commodities was only to be expected. “When we raised the minimum support price of paddy from Rs. 500 to nearly Rs. 900 a quintal, it is quite in order that the retail prices rise,” he said.
Speaking to this correspondent here on Monday, Dr. Reddy rejected the Telugu Desam’s contention that there was an anti-establishment feeling among people arising from the inflation and resentment towards the Government among farmers due to the fertilizer shortage.
The Chief Minister YSR contended that the Opposition was creating an unnecessary brouhaha over fertilizer when there was no shortage. There was indeed a very marginal shortfall in supply but its fallout was confined to a few pockets.
Did this imply that the shortage was caused by deficiencies at the Central level in allocation of fertilizer to the States, he was asked. “No. the Centre has despatched almost the entire quantity of 32 lakh tonnes promised for the kharif. However, we must appreciate that problems are bound to arise when the subsidy on fertilizer shoots up from Rs. 30,000 crore to Rs. 1.30 lakh crore,” he replied.Personal view
Dr. Reddy said he was is in favour of advancing the Assembly elections a month or two ahead of the scheduled time of April 2009 as it would be advantageous to the Congress party. This, he clarified, was his considered personal view and not a party decision.
“The Election Commission is empowered to hold the elections anytime within six months of the completion of the Assembly’s five-year tenure. But I feel if the polls are held in February or March a good harvest will help us in bringing down the prices.”
YSR said he was unfazed by the alliances being stitched together by the opposition parties. These tie-ups were bereft of principles or ideology as the parties were coming together for the sole purpose of defeating the Congress. “I am reminded of a folk tale where a man feels scared at night and surrounds himself with bodyguards who are equally frightened. Similarly, our opposition parties are unnerved at the prospects of facing the Congress in the elections,” he said.