Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Saturday called for a temporary ban on the export of essential commodities to fight rising prices, and urged state governments to take every step possible to ensure the poor were not burdened further.
"We have to moderate inflationary expectations," the prime minister said in his inaugural address at a conference of chief ministers here, convened specifically on the issue of tackling rising prices, especially of essential commodities.
"We must ban export of these items," the prime minister said, while outlining the steps taken by his United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government over the past several months, such as additional allocation of grain for distribution through fair price shops.
At the same time, he also urged state governments to invoke their respective Essential Commodities Maintenance Act to prevent hoarding and take strict action against those creating artificial scarcity and fanning inflationary expectations.
Images courtesy: PTI / AP / AFP
Also see: Budget 2010 special