Mathura, Feb 14 (PTI) In a novel protest against the "steep" hike in the LPG cylinder prices, the Congress women workers here on Friday descended upon the city's busy market area with various utensils and cooked food on earthen ovens using dung cakes and fire woods.
"The LPG cylinders have become unaffordable even for the middle class people like us, that's why we have been forced to cook our meals on earthen ovens using traditional fuel," said a women Congress worker, while trying to stoke oven flames by blowing air into it through a pipe at the busy Holigate market area in the city.
Giving the rational for cooking food in the market place, she said with a smoke-induced teary eyes, "We want the whole word to see how the LPG price rise has forced us to resort to archaic methods in (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi's modern India."
“Owing to the unprecedented rise in LPG cylinder price, the Modi Govt is leading us to stone age," snapped Mahanagar Mahila Congress wing chairperson Shalu Agrawal, echoing her party colleague's anger.
"They first tricked women into adopting LPG cylinders for cooking in the name of their health and now they are forcing us to buy cylinders at such steep prices," she fumed, adding "It's a good business tactics."
Resenting the Union Law Minister Rav Shankar Prasad's alleged assertion that the cylinder prices would not be withdrawn, she said, "It reveals the dictatorial attitude of the government."
"The way the Union minister has rejected the demand of withdrawing price hike of LPG cylinders is highly objectionable," said Shalu.
The Congress women workers were also accompanied by their male colleagues, helping them running errands in the cooking process.
Amid the cooking process, the Congress workers ranted the air with anti-government slogans, ruing "the skyrocketing prices" of various essential commodities.
“Tanashahi nahin chalegi (dictatorship would not be tolerated),” they shouted as bemused onlookers looked at their novel protest.
"Had the BJP government raised the price a few days before the Delhi assembly elections, they would have got zeros seats there," she said.
Meanwhile, UP Congress legislature party's former leader Pradeep Mathur demanded resignation of Union Minister Smriti Irani, saying "she had raised a save-our-soul (SOS) cry" after the cylinder prices were hiked by Rs 2 during the UPA regime, but is now forced to be a "mute spectator of her government's tyranny".
“At price hike of merely Rs two during UPA regime Smriti Irani had been crying 'trahi mam – trahi mam (save our soul), but she has now turned into "mute spectator of her government's tyranny," he said.
"After this three-digit hike of Rs 150 per cylinder, she must be feeling very uncomfortable," he said, adding "the best course for her to overcome her awkward situation is to tender her resignation".