Kolkata: Attacking the Centre over rising prices of fuel, CPI(M) General Secretary Prakash Karat on Saturday said it was pushing up the prices of vegetables and food items though there was no dearth in production.
"Diesel prices are being hiked by 50 paise every month. The price of petrol was increased by 41 paise a litre yesterday. Increase in fuel prices is pushing up the prices of essential commodities," Karat told a party rally at Barrackpore near here.
Criticising central policies for the price hike, he laid the blame on futures trading and the Centre allegedly batting for big business.
"The runaway food and vegetable prices have pushed up wholesale inflation," he said.
Quoting government data for November, he said food inflation rose almost 20 per cent year-on-year. Since last November the prices of vegetables rose to 80 per cent.
"There is no dearth of production of rice, wheat and vegetables. Because of the policies of the Centre, the prices of food items are rising," the CPI(M) leader said.
Stating that sugar price was also skyrocketing, he said farmers were not getting proper remunerative prices.
"The traders are not responsible for the price rise. The policies of the Centre have to change," he said.
The rising prices of sugar, cereals, pulses and vegetables reflected the failure of the Congress-led government in checking food prices and inflation, he said.
He said while the Centre`s policies were responsible for rising prices, state governments had the responsibility to check them.
"But in West Bengal the state government has not made any intervention to contain rising prices."