Special Correspondent

GULBARGA: The State unit of the Janata Dal (United) has blamed the “pro-west and pro-rich” economic policies of the UPA government for the record jump in the inflation rate and demanded the resignation of Finance Minister P. Chidambaram.

Addressing a press conference here on Saturday, party general secretary G.K.C Reddy and former MP V. Venkatesh said that the Union Finance Minister had failed in handling the financial situation and should own the moral responsibility and step down immediately.

Mr. Reddy said the pursuance of “pro-west policies”, and the Government’s dependence on the U.S. in framing its policies, were responsible for the present economic crisis. He said that the UPA Government’s policy of giving more sops to the automobile industries to set up their units, and asking the banks to provide liberal loans to these units, had resulted in more people going in for two-wheelers and four-wheelers.

Mr. Reddy said that foodgrains had become unaffordable for the poor and the middle-class due to continued price rise. Mr. Reddy said that the Janata Dal (U) had demanded that Mr. Chidambaram come out with a White Paper on the economic situation and the reasons for the record rise in the inflation rates.

Mr. Reddy said that the loan waiver announced by the Centre for the farm sector appeared to have very little impact on ending the agrarian crisis. It should come out with a comprehensive agriculture policy, he said.