Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Oil price hike and the bandh in Bengal
The drama opposition parties namely BJP, Left and some other regional parties like TMC are staging in response to the price hike of Petrol, Diesel and Cooking Gas (LPG cylinders) by the India Govt. today makes any man of reason to watch with the smile in the face but with an undercurrent of anger and pain. Everyone knew the price hike was coming. It was being unsustainable for the oil marketing companies (OMCs) like IOC, HPCL and BPCL to retail oil at the prevailing prices.
They were making losses amounting to billions of rupees. The oil bonds issued by the Govt. were not much help as it was illiquid and OMCs were finding it difficult to sell them. The crude oil prices are hovering above $130/barrel. In this scenario the most sensible decision would be to pass it on to the consumers. They will adjust to the price – by reducing the usage – and in the process the demand will come down requiring lesser import. Subsidizing oil price is to subsidize pollution. People will get the incentive to use less fuel, to take public transport rather riding on their own vehicle. Though the price hike will result in higher transportation cost of goods resulting in higher commodity prices and higher inflation but to protect the economy of our country hiking the oil price is the only solution in the given situation. Rather, the UPA Govt. should have announced it earlier.
The BJP criticized the UPA for the decision. The Left parties declared week-long agitation through out the country. They have called a 12 our bandh on 5th June in left ruled states. In Bengal the TMC has called another 12 hour bandh on 6th June in retaliation! They have already started disrupting road and rail traffic to the discomfort of thousands of commuters; many of them do not even know that there are back to back bandhs starting tomorrow. Biman Bose of CPI (M) seemed very concerned for the poor people after the party's defeat in many seats in the just concluded Bengal Rural poll! The TMC leader, Miss Mamta Banerjee says, "If the left front calls a bandh, we will also call a bandh". Miss Banerjee suddenly realized that the left front, by calling the bandh in protest of the oil price hike, was trying to woo the poor. How can she let this happen? What a drama! These political parties without any ideology and their monstrous leaders without any ideal are holding the people to ransom. Are the people of our country so unconscious that they do not understand that these good for nothing leaders are throttling our right to live and work freely? May be they are. Or may be they are kept that way!
I wonder why most of the political leaders elsewhere behave this way. May be this is because most of them are worthless in terms of their own merit. They only have the faculty of crooked thinking. They know they can not stand on their own. The need support of the people belonging to the lowest level (in terms of education, earnings) of the society. They despise intelligence. They despise rationality. They despise success. They despise progress. They want static status quo. They know they need a stagnant society to hold on to power. They never learn. They shudder to take responsibility. They need to be thrown out for the progress of our country.