Trinamool MPs for pulling out of UPA, Mamata says wait


Kolkata: Trinamool Congress MPs Friday favoured quitting the UPA government to protest the “repeated unilateral decisions” to raise petrol prices, but chief Mamata Banerjee kept the decision pending and requested Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for a meeting after his return from Cannes.

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Party head and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s decision came after the Trinamool Congress parliamentary party expressed deep concern over the repeated petrol price hikes, saying it was “unacceptable” for the party to be kept in the dark before such moves are announced.

“We are all going to the meet our chairperson Mamata Banerjee and tell them of our stand. We will entrust her with the task of taking the final decision,” union Minister of State for Health and Trinamool Lok Sabha member Sudip Bandopadhyay told mediapersons after a meeting of the parliamentary party.

“All the MPs have expressed their views. We are concerned about the price rise and the manner in which it is being done,” he added.

“Our leader is very much concerned about the price rise of essentials and petroleum products. There is a feeling that these decisions are being taken by keeping us in the complete dark and. It is totally unacceptable,” said Bandopadhyay.

The Trinamool, with 18 Lok Sabha MPs, is the second largest constituent of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government at the centre.

Trinamool sources said Banerjee was extremely peeved over the regular oil price hikes and the party’s discontent has been conveyed to the central leadership of the Congress.

A Trinamool leader said the party was never consulted before such important decisions, which have a direct bearing on the daily lives of the common people.

Oil marketing companies Thursday raised petrol prices by Rs.1.80 per litre effective midnight, just over a month-and-a-half since the last hike of Rs.3.14 a litre on Sep 15.

The latest hike is the 11th since June 2010.