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No magic wand to control price rise: Mukherjee


New Delhi : The government is taking all necessary measures to control price rise but it has no “magic wand” to quickly fix the problem, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said Friday.

“You can’t expect that there is any magic wand or like Alladin’s magic lamp that somebody rubs it and your problem is solved,” Mukherjee told reporters here while reacting on persistent high inflation.

He said the policy makers had taken a series of steps, including tightening of monetary policy by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), to control inflation.

“A series of steps have been taken by the Reserve Bank of India — including mopping up the excess liquidity by adjusting the crucial rates. Recently it has announced another 25 basis points increase in repo and reverse repo rates,” finance minister said.

India’s annual food inflation shot up to 17.05 percent for the week ended Jan 22 from 15.57 percent during the previous week.

Prices of essential commodities including onions, vegetables and other food items continue to head northward despite a series of anti-inflationary measures taken by fiscal and monetary policy makers.

The RBI in its third quarter monetary policy review recently hiked its repurchase or repo rate to 6.5 percent from 6.25 percent and reverse repo rate to 5.5 percent from 5.25 percent.

It had also revised its current fiscal year-end projections for inflation, raising it to 7 percent from the earlier 5.5 percent.