The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:
The CPI(M) strongly opposes the increase of freight charges by the Railway Ministry for transport of essential commodities like foodgrains, pulses and fertilizers by as much as 8.33 per cent. The hike, coming at a time when the Central Government has had to bow to public pressure and reduce the prices of diesel and petrol, is entirely unwarranted and will lead to higher prices of essential commodities adding to the burden of inflation on the people. The increase of freight charges on fertilizers is shocking and reflects the total insensitivity of the Government to the distress being faced by farmers.
The CPI(M) demands that the proposed hike from February 1 be withdrawn. It calls on the people to protest this hike.