Stop futures trading in food to control prices: Tripura government

Agartala, June 11 (IANS) The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) led Left Front government in Tripura Friday urged the central government stop futures trading in food commodities to control the rising prices of essential goods.

Presenting the state budget for 2010-2011 in the assembly, Finance Minister Badal Chaudhury also sought extension of irrigation facilities, building up of buffer stocks in food deficit areas, providing adequate fertiliser subsidy, strengthening public distribution system and containing transportation costs.

‘For bringing down the abnormal rise of prices, it is essential to boost production of food grains and essential commodities,’ he added.

Blaming the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) central government for ‘bringing a number of legislations and take several measures to curtail the autonomy of the states’, he also noted that in the union budget, the food subsidy has been reduced by over Rs.400 crore despite the Congress’ commitment to enact a food security legislation.

The minister presented a tax-free Rs.6,693 crore budget with a deficit of Rs.186 crore for the current fiscal.

The budget, presented on the first day of the three-week session of the assembly, proposed a substantial increase of funds for the urban and rural poor for providing maximum number of employment days in a year.

The budget, which is 2.11 percent over the revised budget (Rs.6,555 crore) for 2009-10, predicted growth of state’s tax and other revenue by implementing efficient tax collection system, adopting various economic measures, and improving financial management and austerity in government expenditure.

The finance minister has also announced several sops for the government’s regular and contingent employees besides to offer thousands of government jobs in the education department.

‘Gradual removal of poverty, improving quality of life with special focus on the poor and downtrodden, and generation of employment within limited resources are the main objectives of the budget,’ Chaudhury said in his budget speech.

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