The price of a Shell Gas cylinder goes up from Rs 1309 to Rs 1500 or 12.7% effective midnight tonight. Other brands will also go up. So announced the Minister of Consumer Affairs. Just think! Kalapanakaranna! I smiled rather a smirky one at that when the news flashed accross to me just minutes after the announcement that inflation had dropped to a historic low of 2.9%.
The Western Provincial Council elections just concluded; knowing that 80% of gas cylinder sales are to the Western Province customers who if they knew of this in advance would have been a little less euphoric in their choice of support. They have little acess to firewood, the overwhelming method of fuel for cooking in the rest of the Island and would no doubt be smarting after earlier being gleeful of the equivalent reduction not too long ago of about the same amount.
Readers, those of you in Sri Lanka are most likely to be in the Western Province, and few would know of the Gas price as it may not be under your purview but surely the irony is not lost on you!I am sure there are legitimate reasons for this increase, possibly the government decided to sock it to you as a tax as you are the most able to afford to take the hit, and will take it lying down. No demonstrations on the streets, as God forbid a demonstration would be perceived as not an expression of free will and anger, but pandering to the enemy!
Kalpanakaranna, these are but mere gestures or indications that we dont matter, the government is in total control of our lives, and Ministers take pleasure in directly interfering in our lives, either by increasing or decreasing prices by decree, thereby making friends with the constituency or making enemies of the constituency.
We just get manipulated and seem to be a most complacent country being lead like lambs to slaughter due to our inability to express dissent and exercise our freedom at the games people play on us. We must take the exercising of our franchise more seriously and the lower turnout at the recent polls as an indication of lack of faith in our vote being of any value.
I am just expressing a feeling and I am sure you readers will have your own take on this, so please have your say. I usually live out of the western province and use a mati dara lipa for cooking and maybe I as I have access to firewood, use it even in my place in the Western Province, where I use a gas cylinder every four months, an indication of the frequency of living, cooking and time there.
Out of interest the hopper prices did not go down when the reduction of the gas cylinder took place a few months ago, will it now go up citing the increase in the price of gas? Let me know if any of you have to pay a rupee more for your appa as a result.