Rice at Rs two/kg for families with less than Rs 10,000 pm: CM
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Last Updated: Wednesday, March 23, 2011, 18:33
Kolkata: The CPI(M)-led Left Front is committed to keeping its election pledge of providing rice at Rs two per kg for the families having a monthly income of less than Rs 10,000, Chief Minister Buddhadev Bhattacharjee said on Wednesday.

"We will make available rice at Rs two per kg to those families earning less than Rs 10,000 per month," the chief minister told a press conference at the CPI-M headquarters here, reiterating the promises made at the Left Front manifesto in this regard.

He said that APL or BPL criteria would not be applicable and all those families earning Rs 10,000 per month would be entitled to get rice at Rs two per kg from ration shops.

"Sugar will also be given through ration shops," he said. Ridiculing the Opposition's call for 'change', the chief minister said, "Should they want a change in land reforms which gave 84 per cent land to land-losers under the Left Front regime, or change in industrialisation or still change in the midday meal scheme?"

"Do they want a change like the way the Railways has brought about?" Bhattacharjee said, apparently pointing a finger at the performance of Mamata Banerjee as Railway Minister.

"People are watching how the Railways is functioning. The six Trinamool Congress ministers of state at the Centre are simply loitering around and are like non-performing assets in closed factories," he said.

He claimed that people who voted against the Left Front were returning to it. "We want a change too and that is the change for the better."

Asked if he was taking the onus upon himself for the mistakes committed by his government in the acquisiton of farmland for industry and the high-handedness of a section CPI-M leaders, the chief minister said, "When there is a criticism, I cannot be left out because I have a role in policy making."

He said there was some confusion in the acquisition of land because of some policy loopholes which, he pointed out, had later been corrected.

"We are also criticised for doing nothing for the minorities. But now we have taken steps for their upliftment like reservation of jobs for poor Muslims."

Admitting to undue interference by a section of party leaders in civil society's day-to-day affairs, he said, "Ours is a big party. Mistakes by some cause harm to the party. We have asked party workers and leaders to admit the mistakes and show respect to the people."

Interference in civil society's affairs would not be tolerated and party leaders have been told to abstain from high-handed and domineering attitude, Bhattacharjee added.


First Published: Wednesday, March 23, 2011, 18:33

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