Sunday, June 23, 2024
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Trinamool MPs to meet PM over petrol prices

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NEW DELHI/ KOLKATA: After threatening to pull out of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) over the recent hike in petrol prices, a delegation of Trinamool Congress MPs will meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi Tuesday to express their concern over the issue, party leaders said.

However, party chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will remain in Kolkata where she is to meet union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee Tuesday afternoon to discuss the issue, party sources said.

State Finance Minister Amit Mitra will accompany Banerjee at the meeting with Mukherjee.

The financial demands of West Bengal will be discussed at the meeting between Banerjee and Mukherjee, sources added.

“We will meet the prime minister tomorrow (Tuesday) at 5 p.m. at his residence. All the Trinamool Congress MPs of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha will be there. We will discuss the issue of the petrol price hike,” Trinamool general secretary and Minister of State for Shipping Mukul Roy told IANS in Kolkata.

“After the meeting we will give an initial reaction but the final decision will be taken by the party supremo Mamata Banerjee and the party. We will announce our final stand after that,” said Roy.

Official sources said in New Delhi a full roll back of the hiked prices – as demanded by the Trinamool initially – was out of question. However, the government may agree to the Trinamool’s suggestion of a consultative mechanism before decisions on sensitive issues like petrol price hike are taken.

The Trinamool protests may lead to the postponement of government’s plans to hike the prices of LPG and other petroleum products, the sources added. The Trinamool, with 18 Lok Sabha members, is the second largest partner of the UPA.

Giving a virtual ultimatum, the party had Friday threatened to quit the UPA coalition against “repeated unilateral decisions” to raise fuel and coal prices but its leader Mamata Banerjee kept the decision pending and sought a meeting with PM Manmohan Singh after his return from Cannes, where he was attending the G20 summit. (IANS)

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