Thiruvananthapuram: The opposition LDF in
Kerala on Monday staged a walkout in the state Assembly protesting
rejection of their adjournment motion on steep increase in
Railway freight surcharge in the "busy season" and its adverse
impact on the state.
Replying to the notice given by Elamaram Kareem (CPI-M)
on the issue, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said the government
would convey its concern to the Centre over the matter since
Kerala was a consumer state which depends on other parts of
the country for foodgrains and essential goods.
Chandy said in the case of foodgrains transportation, the
additional burden would be borne by Food Corporation of India
while most other essential goods and vegetables have been
brought to the state by road.
The Opposition, however, insisted that the government
bring in a resolution to express the entire House`s concern
and protest against the Railway`s decision.
As Deputy Speaker N Sakthan declined to comply with their
demand for adjournment motion, LDF members stage a walkout.
Before leading his colleagues out, CPI-M leader E P
Jayaranan said there was no justification on the part of the
Railways to hike tariff rates as a non-budgetary measure.
This step, expected to net Rs 7,000 crore to the Railways,
will further intensify inflation and a consumer state like
Kerala would be the worst sufferer, he said.