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Sunday, 27 April 2008

An unjustified move indeed

Doubling of CNG prices by a government having no mandate to take any major decision will have a serious bearing on the economy. It will hit the people below their belt. This is happening at a time when millions of people are going half-fed in the country. It is reported that the BPC used to sustain 30 crore taka loss on account of subsidy to CNG before doubling of the price. Since the caretakers assumed power in 2007, it harboured a funny notion that all the rich and wealthy are the people who earned money through questionable and corrupt means. That was why we saw how reckless the administration had been in crackdown on people with money. He is paying income tax and other taxes to the extent of wealth he possesses. It was because of this silly decision that our businessmen now have no option but to remain idle with money lying in bank vault or inside their pillows. As a result, hundreds of thousands of educated youth now remain unemployed as there were no new industries set up during the last one and a half year of the caretaker rule.The government’s directive asking owners of CNG-run buses and trucks not to raise fares shows utter lack of understanding of the ground realities. None cared a fig about the caretakers when they asked traders to lower prices of essentials and they could not even compel the auto-rickshaw or cab drivers to charge metered fares. Gas is an item produced in Bangladesh, not imported ones like octane, diesel or petrol. Every section of the society has a right to consume it at cheaper prices as people in Middle East buy oil at throwaway prices. Sadly, there still is no step to stop pilferage of gas nor is there any attempt on the part of the caretakers to install gas meters in households to stop burning of huge gas in homes. Such gross misuse of gas and free meals have led BPC to go red.

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