Inflation will come down to 7 percent by March: PM (Second Lead)

February 24th, 2011 - 7:00 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh New Delhi, Feb 24 (IANS) Admitting that inflation was a “matter of concern”, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Thursday expressed hope that it would come down to seven percent by March.”Inflation in the last 18 months has become a problem. We stand committed to control inflation,” Manmohan Singh told the Lok Sabha, replying to a debate on the motion of thanks on the president’s address.

“By the end of this fiscal year (March), I hope the inflation will come down to seven percent… I expect the food inflation to go down as well… I expect the situation to improve,” the prime minister said.

Later, in his reply to similar debate in the Rajya Sabha, the prime minister said the government will make its best effort to move the Food Security Bill during the current session of parliament.

“We hope to bring in this session the Food Security Bill which will give the people constitutional right to food,” the prime minister said, adding, “Inflation hurts the weakest section, we have to strengthen the PDS (public distribution system).”

He also said that despite the price rise, the prices of food grain, including wheat and rice, had not been raised in the PDS.

Talking about the international market, Manmohan Singh said that in view of reports of a poor wheat crop in China, the international food prices may spurt.

“According to reports, the Chinese wheat crop has failed,” he said, adding that India need not fear as adequate stock of food grain is available.

The prime minister also assured the house that the government will focus on increasing agriculture production.

“There are commodities that we can control the prices of, like cereals. We have been able to stabilise the prices of cereals and grains. We can control inflation but in a manner that we do not adversely affect the growth process. Inflation can be controlled by increasing agricultural production and investing in agriculture,” he added.

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