The government’s policies are detrimental to the masses as prices of commodities are increasing with every passing day, said Muhammad Saleem Bhatti, the PPP Bahawalpur secretary information, while talking to the media at High Court Bar Bahawalpur.
Bhatti said the economic experts believe that inflation rate is soaring due to the economic policies of the government, which is heavily depending on borrowing. Similarly, the government massively enhanced the power tariff last month, which is also fuelling the inflation rate, he added. “Due to the constant rise in inflation, the State Bank of Pakistan has increased the discount rate by 50 points. Since June 12, 2013 the prices of manufactured items have been on the rise because of increase in the sales tax from 16 to 17 percent and imposition of withholding tax on various products in the budget 2013-14,” he added.
Criticising the PML-N leadership, he said the government had projected the inflation target of 8 percent for the 2013-14 fiscal year compared to 7.38 percent in the year 2012-13. However, the government has revised upward the inflation target to 11-12pc for the whole year, he added. Quoting the data by PBS, he said that the CPI-based inflation has enhanced by 8.84 percent during first five months (July-November).
“Sensitive Price Index-based inflation surged by 10.66 percent and Wholesale Price Indicator-based inflation increased by 8.74 percent. The break-up of CPI-based general inflation (10.9 percent) showed that food and beverages prices went up by 13 percent, alcoholic beverages and tobacco prices increased by 14.45 percent, clothing and footwear prices soared by 13.98 percent, housing water, electricity and gas fuels 9.55 percent, healthcare charges went up by 6.18 percent, transportation charges increased 9.01 percent, communication charges 4.82 percent, recreation and culture charges went up by 9.91 percent, education charges 8.48 percent, restaurants and hotel charges by 12.26 percent and miscellaneous 4.63 percent in November 2013,” he said.
Condemning the government’s policies, Bhatti said that the government had failed to give relief in agri based national products as price of tomatoes increased by 75.81 percent in the month of November against October, price of potatoes enhanced by 44.51 percent, prices of onions went up by 12.32 percent, price of eggs surged by 11.06, price of sugar increased by 7.42 percent, price of fresh vegetables surged by 4.2 percent, price of wheat products went up by 3.82 percent, price of wheat products enhanced by 3.37 percent, price of wheat flour enhanced by 2.86 percent, price of pulse (moong) washed raised by 2.30 percent during the month of November.