Tue, 16 Apr 2024 Today's Paper

INSULTING INTELLIGENCE OF THE MASSES - EDITORIAL

14 December 2021 03:00 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

A A A

Going by the statements made by the government ministers who are more relevant to the main issues that are affecting the people these days, one would wonder if they are intentionally insulting the intelligence of the masses. They do not seem to understand the current ordeal the ordinary people in the country are going through following some of the controversial decisions made by the government. Sometimes they knew the situation on the ground, but they may be more concerned about saving their skin from the higher ups.


Domestic gas related explosions and incidents of fire continue to be reported. With the fear of explosions mounting even among affluent families, the prices of substitute electrical and other appliances such as the hot plates, kerosene stoves and even the firewood have risen unprecedentedly – sometimes by fivefold. In many areas only a limited volume of kerosene is distributed by the vendors. In urban areas many families do not have facilities to use kerosene or firewood and they have been forced to take the risk of using gas.


Authorities, including the relevant ministers have been defending the gas companies that had put the blame on the hapless consumers claiming that the reason for explosions was faulty accessories such as the oven, regulator and the hose that is carrying gas from the cylinder to the cooker. The committee appointed by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa too advised the consumers to use proper accessories, as if they have collectively resorted to use inferior accessories lately. 


In spite of it being clear that it is the recent change in the composition of gas that causes intense pressure inside the cylinders, the government institutions that are responsible for the protection of rights of the consumers and the politicians attempted to fool the people, by adding odour- emanating chemicals in gas and changing the colour of the seal on the cylinder valve. It is only now; when explosions involving the cylinders with a new red and white seal to “ensure safety” being reported, they are reluctantly admitting that there are issues with the composition of gas.
Meanwhile, many farmers have given up cultivation for want of fertilizer and other agro-chemicals such as the insecticide and weedicide. The Government decided to allow private sector to import chemical fertilizer after the damage was already done. However, media reported on Monday that private companies are not interested in importing chemical fertilizer due to the foreign exchange controls imposed by the government. At the same time, in many areas, farmers have reportedly refused to accept the liquid organic fertilizer distributed by the government institutions such as agrarian service centres claiming that even dogs and wild boars were destroying the crops due to the odour that is emanating from fertilizer. And they have complained that the plastic fertilizer containers were bursting. 


Agriculture minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage belittled the issue saying that this was a “fish tonic” which normally has a nauseating odour and only three or four out of 800,000 liquid fertilizer containers had burst. He had also accused that some companies involved in chemical fertilizer trade were behind the farmers’ agitations and that vegetable prices have come down drastically once the government permitted the private sector to import chemical fertilizer. He seems unaware that farmers or traders cannot hoard vegetable like rice or other grains. Once you harvest vegetables, you have to sell them straightaway or feed the animals. The Agriculture Minister does not seem to know the vegetable prices; they never came down for the past several months.  Even Minister Ramesh Pathirana who normally speaks sense had echoed this unfounded observation.  


Despite it being a well-known fact that there is an acute scarcity of some essential items such as milk powder and prices of all items are skyrocketing. However, Trade Minister Bandula Gunawardena argues that there is no shortage of essential food items and anybody can buy anything at a lesser price stipulated by the State at SATHOSA outlets. He, being the Trade Minister may be aware of the ratio between the private groceries and SATHOSA outlets in a particular area or in the country as a whole and that what would be the situation if SATHOSA alone had to cater to all customers in the country! 


Leaders must be open with the people and explain them the real issues that are affecting the government. They should have explained the foreign exchange issue that the government was facing to the farmers at the beginning of the year and scientifically study the viabilities of options without attempting to force impractical programmes on them. They must be sincere to admit the mistakes in issues such as the gas-related explosions and seek support from the people to rectify them. People cannot be fooled by denying what they are practically undergoing.   


Order Gifts and Flowers to Sri Lanka. See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Kids Toys, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,Astrology, Courier/Delivery, Medicine Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka

  Comments - 0

Order Gifts and Flowers to Sri Lanka. See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Kids Toys, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,Astrology, Courier/Delivery, Medicine Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka

Add comment

Comments will be edited (grammar, spelling and slang) and authorized at the discretion of Daily Mirror online. The website also has the right not to publish selected comments.

Reply To:

Name - Reply Comment





Order Gifts and Flowers to Sri Lanka. See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Kids Toys, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,Astrology, Courier/Delivery, Medicine Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka

MIRROR CRICKET

More