Polit Bureau member of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), Sitaram Yechury, has demanded that the Union Government roll back the hike in petroleum products, release the buffer stock of foodgrains for the poor and ban speculative trading in essential commodities to contain rising prices.
Inaugurating the four-day “Study camp of South Indian States” organised by the Students' Federation of India (SFI) here on Saturday, Mr. Yechury said that there was no need to raise the prices of petrol, diesel, kerosene and cooking gas after the deregulation of petroleum products.
Describing the hike as a cruel attack on the common man, he warned that it would result in an increase in transport costs and add to the people's burden. The reason cited by the UPA Government for the hike was that oil companies were facing losses; however, this was unfounded as there had been no change in crude prices in the last three months. There would be no loss if the tax structure was rationalised, Mr. Yechury said. Congratulating the Supreme Court for upholding the argument of the Opposition, the CPI (M) leader said that the court had told the Government in a strongly worded ruling to distribute grain among the poor.