"Cheap rice coming"
Ministry Secretary, Dr. R.M.K.
Ratnayake said that the price of rice
would be stabilised within the next
said that the country has already
received a shipment of 10,000 mt of
ponny samba from India.
also said that prices would stabilise
once 30,000 mt of rice is imported
from Pakistan within the next two
weeks. The government is to spend a
sum of US$ 6 million to import rice
to the allegations leveled against the
government by rice importers that they
were prevented from importing rice,
Dr. Ratnayake said that the traders
were given enough time to import rice.
also said that if the government
flooded the market with rice now, it
would then have an adverse impact on
the local farmers when their produce
came into the market.
to Dr. Ratnayake, once the prices were
stabilised, a kilo of samba would be
sold at Rs. 45-50 while others like
kekulu and nadu would be sold at
around Rs. 30.
he said that people could purchase a
kilo of ponny samba at Rs. 52.50 from
any Cooperative or Lak Sathosa outlet.
Ratnayake said that once the Maha
harvest came into the market, the
prices would further stabilise.
for bread at Rs. 100
and Consumer Affairs Minister Bandula
Gunawardena last week said that no one
would be able to prevent a loaf of
bread from rising to Rs. 100.
irony is that it was Gunewardena who
in early January said that the prices
of essential items would be stabilised
by April. Even in an interview with
The Sunday Leader, he said that the
government was in the process of
taking necessary steps to reduce the
prices of essential items and maintain
them by April.
last week he stated that a loaf of
bread might increase to Rs. 100.
the rate the price of wheat flour is
rising not even Vaima the son of Sakka
can stop the loaf of bread rising to
Rs. 100 in Sri Lanka in the future,
Gunawardena was reported in the media
as saying in Kandy last Monday (14).
Gunawardena was opening a Cooperative
Medical Centre in Kandy when he said
that it was not that easy to bring
down the price of commodities when
goods are going up in price in the
can draw cartoons against the cost of
goods going up. Any one can put up
posters and paint walls calling for
the price reduction of consumer goods.
But none of those tactics can bring
down the price of goods, he has said.
I can bring down the cost of goods so
easily, I need not wait till I am
ridiculed so much," Gunewardena
has also said.
said the farmer would be given all
possible facilities and encouragement
to produce agro based goods. The
international trend at present is to
encourage agriculture. The cost of
living and prices of consumer articles
could be brought down only by the
production of agro-based goods, he
Minister said that steps were being
taken to make arrangements to reduce
the price of rice in the market in the
JVP that decided to abstain from
voting at the third stage of the
budget after heavily criticising it
since it was presented in parliament
last November has now charged that the
government was not keen in providing
any real relief to the masses.
government last month thanked the JVP
for its decision to abstain from
voting at the final stage of the
budget, which they said helped save
the passing of the budget, the burdens
on the masses have increased four fold
with the steady increase in the cost
of living. The escalating prices of
essential items has made the masses
find fault with the JVP, supposedly
'the common man's party.'
one month later, true to its Jekyll
and Hyde nature the JVP is booming
again, criticising the government's
handling of the cost of living issue.
JVP has charged that the government
was trying to fool the masses by
attributing the fuel price hike to
defence expenditure and the global
market prices without highlighting the
heavy expenses incurred by the state
to maintain a large number of
a statement on the increase of fuel
prices the JVP has stated that the
government was trying to capitalise on
the rising global market prices than
looking in to the welfare of the
JVP has stated that the government by
attributing the rise in fuel prices to
the war and the increase in global
fuel prices has tried to conceal from
the people the expenses the state has
incurred in maintaining a large
cabinet, the money spent on their
perks and the corruption and waste in
the government. Ironically it is this
very same government the JVP opted to
retain at the last budget.
Marxists have also accused the
government of increasing the prices of
fuel that had been purchased several
months back at a much lesser price.
government that is unable to manage
the escalating cost of living or
providing relief to the masses can
only entertain the masses with its
large cabinet. The ministers who are
ignorant of developing the country or
bring relief to the people through
their portfolios perform this act of
being jesters quite well. However,
these pranks and foolishness don't
bring relief to people. If the
government doesn't realise that when
the stomach is empty, the mind too
would become vacant and the day the
masses decide to topple the government
would not be far away," the JVP
Mahinda Rajapakse has become a record
the day petrol was brought to Sri
Lanka up until the time Rajapakse took
over in 2005 its price had risen to
only Rs. 60 a litre. However in a
matter of just two years Rajapakse as
President and Finance Minister has
managed to more than double the price
to Rs. 127 a litre.
by any standard is quite a record in