LDF’s protest plan a gimmick, says Congress

August 31st, 2008 - 6:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 31 (IANS) Reacting to Karala’s ruling Left Democratic Front’s plans to protest the central government’s policies, the state’s opposition Congress Sunday said Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan’s government was indulging in this “gimmick” to divert attention from its “weak governance”.”The LDF yesterday decided to launch a protest strike against the central government by staging a march to parliament when the next session begins. What wrong has the central government done? This is nothing but a gimmick to camouflage their weak governance here,” state Congress president Ramesh Chennithala told reporters here.

He also criticised the LDF nod to the state government to increase the water charges after a hike in electricity charges this month.

“In the last state budget, a loan to the tune of Rs.839 crore (Rs.8.39 billion) was given to the Kerala Water Authority to tide over its financial problems and Rs.1,006 crore (Rs.10.06 billion) in interest which it owed to the centre was also written off. With all these, they have raised the water charges,” Chennithala said.

“Next, the government will hike the property tax,” he added.

He also pointed out that no other central government had extended so much assistance to Kerala as the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) had.

“The central government has just sanctioned 30,000 tonnes of rice and 20,000 tonnes of wheat for the upcoming Onam season. The Vizhinjam port project has been cleared, so has been the new HAL (Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd) factory in Kasargode,” said Chennithala.

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