India’s inflation rate marginally up at 0.26 percent (Lead)

April 23rd, 2009 - 4:24 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, April 23 (IANS) India’s annual rate of inflation rose marginally to 0.26 percent for the week ended April 11, from 0.18 percent the week before, official data showed Thursday.
The inflation rate based on official wholesale price index had declined for eight consecutive weeks to 0.27 percent for the week ended March 14, but marginally rose to 0.31 percent for the week ended March 21. It continued to decline for consecutive weeks, before rising again to 0.26 percent for the week ended April 11.

Between April 11 and April 4, the wholesale price index rose 0.3 percent to 228.8 from 228.2 the week before, as per the provisional data released by the commerce and industry ministry.

Among the three main commodity groups, the index for manufactured products and primary articles rose 0.2 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively.

The index for fuel, power, light and lubricants, however, remained unchanged at the previous week’s level of 322.6 (provisional).

The central bank, while announcing a 25 basis points cut in key rates April 21, said the economy would grow by six percent this fiscal while inflation would rise to around four percent.

Sriram Khanna, the commerce department head at Delhi School of Economics, said the rate of inflation would now continue to grow and go beyond five percent in the festival season of Diwali this year.

“Prices continue to be low. The consumption growth will pick up around Diwali. There is also a bumper harvest this year. This would all help keep up the pace of demand,” said Khanna.

Dalip Kumar, head of projects at the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER), a Delhi-based think tank, also shared the same view.

“The consumption growth would pick up further, which will bring the economic growth back on the track,” he said.

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