New Delhi: Claiming that the neo-liberal policies of the UPA government favour the rich and the BJP was no different, CPI-M General Secretary Prakash Karat Tuesday said there was a need to present alternative policies before the people.
Speaking at his party`s `sangharsh sandesh rally` at the Ram Lila maidan here, Karat announced that from May 15 to May 31, CPI-M workers will carry out protests and resort to picketing at various levels in support of people`s demands.
"Today, the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre is implementing policies which favour big businessmen, foreign capital and the rich. The resources and minerals of our country are being gifted either cheap or free to big industrialists. It is the policies of the government because of which inflation is increasing," he said.
Karat said prices of petrol and diesel have been raised while fertiliser subsidy has been curbed. He said that since the time when liberal policies have been implemented, in the past 18 years, 2.90 lakh farmers have committed suicide.
Karat also said that while the subsidies were being cut, the rich were given tax rebates in the Union budget. He alleged that the government policies were framed under US pressure and said that FDI in retail would hurt small traders.
"Till the time we don`t remove the UPA government, we can`t change its policies," Karat said. "But is the BJP is an alternative of the Congress? The BJP`s economic policy is same as that of the Congress," he said and alleged that both the Congress and the BJP were corrupt.
"There is a need for a new alternative. But how will this alternative be formed? Only when we are able to present alternative policies to the neo-liberal policies of Congress and the BJP," Karat said.
He said that the alternative policies should be in favour of landless farmers, where the rich are taxed to provide food security, employment, education and health.