Inflation will moderate in six to nine months: Chidambaram

August 6th, 2008 - 10:59 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of P. Chidambaram

New Delhi, Aug 6 (IANS) Finance Minister P. Chidambaram Wednesday told a gathering of Congress spokespersons here that inflation would take a minimum six to nine months to moderate. Speaking at the closed-door orientation programme, Chidambaram expressed confidence that the monetary measures undertaken by the government would yield results, but it would take some time, sources told IANS.

The minister also said the nine percent economic growth has had positive as well as negative impacts on the common people.

Where there was good governance, there were positive effects, he said.

Sources said Chidambaram was at his best to convince the participants that the country’s economy under the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government was doing much better.

He made almost an hour-long presentation at the Congress headquarters on the economy, which was hit by a high inflation of 11.98 percent for the week ended July 19.

According to the sources, the minister tried to put the onus for soaring prices on the states, accusing them of not taking action against hoarders.

He accused the state governments of not invoking the Essential Commodities Act, and playing ball with traders.

Chidambaram added that the central government has reduced duties and taxes even after the budget was passed to control inflation. Post-budget tax cuts have resulted in a loss Rs.296.65 billion in revenue.

Pointing out the huge profits steel giants like Tata Steel Ltd and Steel Authority of India Ltd made in the first quarter of this fiscal, Chidambaram said he favoured the current voluntary freeze on steel price rise.

Congress general secretary and MP Rahul Gandhi, who was one of the speakers at the gathering, spoke on how the loan waiver scheme and the rural job scheme - National Rural Employment Guarantee (NREG) - helped the poor in the country.

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