A Correspondent

KATTAPPANA: Union Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi has said that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government had succeeded in arresting price rise and giving subsidy to the farmers.

Inaugurating the election convention of Idukki Lok Sabha candidate P.T.Thomas at Thodupuzha on Saturday, Mr Ravi said the State government had failed in implementing the schemes announced by the Centre and could not control the prices of essential items.

While the UPA government reduced the prices of petrol and diesel and provided rice at a subsidised rate, Kerala faced a price rise in essential items, he said and added that it was due to an artificial scarcity created by hoarding and black marketing of the items.

Pointing out that the UPA government came to power defeating the ‘India Shining’ campaign of the BJP, he said that the government had successfully generated employment to 3.88 lakh people. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi provided an able leadership to the country.

The stern measures recently adopted by the UPA government could effectively control the price rise. He said the formation of the Third Front by the Left parties is only a dream and will not materialise in the coming elections.

He appealed to the voters to give a thumping victory to UDF candidate P.T. Thomas. Leaders including Johny Nellore, Benny Behnan, Roshy Augustine, MLA, and Joy Thomas attended the function.

LDF campaign

Meanwhile, the LDF has already started the campaign for sitting MP, K. Francis George of the Kerala Congress (J). The LDF convener Vaikom Viswam inaugurated the election convention at Thodupuzha on Friday. Leaders of various parties of the front and Mr. George attended the convention.

Though, the convention was delayed, Mr. George had launched his election campaign with posters and election banners appearing even in remote areas and opening of election offices at various centres.

BJP candidate

The BJP has also started its campaign with its district president Sreenagari Rajan in the fray. Though born at Karuvatta in Alappuzha district, he has been a resident of Kattappana since 1978.

This time, the nomination papers have also been printed in Tamil in addition to English and Malayalam. There is sizeable number of Tamil residents especially plantation workers in the constituency.