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JAMMU, Jun 25: The Congress Party staged a protest against a surge in diesel and petrol prices in Jammu on Thursday, under the leadership of Former Minister J&K Raman Bhalla (Vice President JKPCC) and Former Minister J&K Yogesh Sawhney, General Secretary JKPCC and In Charge District President Jammu Urban. The demonstration was organised by Uttam Singh, Varinder Manhas and Block Presidents of Block 1 and Block 4, Jammu West opposite Police Station, Janipur. The Congress leaders maintained social distancing and also adhered to other health norms while holding the protest.
Senior Congress leaders, Block Presidents, Ward Presidents and contested candidates participated in the demonstration, including Kanta Bhan Vice President PCC, DCC Vice President Ramakant Khajuria, Pawan Dev Singh , Sushant Gupta , Vijay Sharma and Joginder Singh Chib , Pradeep Bhagat, H S Bhaghi, Pankaj Sharma, Vijay Bhagat, Sikander Khan, Pradeep Kumar, Madhu Kumar, Mannu Jamwal, Jatin Vashisht, Shambu Prasad Basotra, Harjit Singh Baghi, Surinder Kumar Bhagat, Vijay Bhagat, Pankaj Sharma, Naresh Sharma, Shamsher Choudhary, Bachan Singh Chib, Swaran Singh Chib, Jagdish kumar, Surjeet Singh Manhas, Yashpal Sagar, Rajkumar Menia and Ajay Kumar.
Raman Bhalla stated that the party has decided to hold mass protests at block levels as an attempt “to awaken the government to the hardships of the people”. “Block 1 and Block 4 Block Presidents, Ward Presidents and DCC members under the leadership of Sawhney and Senior Congress leaders are present to express our criticism of the government’s actions. The continuously rising price of diesel and petrol, for seventeen consecutive days, is increasing the burden on the local people. They increased the fuel prices and additionally increased transport fair by 30% in Jammu. No money is percolating down to the middle class or poor people. No financial and relief help is being provided to the public. As a result of such policies, the local consumer suffers on a daily basis.” Bhalla said.
The high retail price of petrol and diesel continues to impact the common man even though global market has thrown enough cues for a sharp cut in the price of auto fuels.
While the Coronavirus scare and continued flat demand for oil has pushed down the global crude price that has fallen sharply by over 24 per cent to $53 a barrel over last one month, there has been less than proportional decrease in retail price of petrol and diesel with oil companies building a cushion for possible increase in oil prices later this year.
Bhalla said that diesel and petrol prices have been on the rise since the last two weeks. In the last 17 days, petrol and diesel prices have both gone up by almost Rs 10 per litre even though the price of crude oil is around USD 40 per barrel. As per present crude oil prices, diesel and petrol costs should also be lowered proportionately, he said. He said it is important that prices are reduced because economic activity is at its lowest and people are sitting at home without any work.In such a scenario, the government should not aim to earn profit from people who are already facing the brunt of the economic downturn owing to Covid-19.
He demanded rollback of taxes on petrol and diesel to provide relief to common people. Hitting out at the Modi government, former Minister and senior Congress leader said, “Today the whole country is passing through a difficult period and the common man is facing hardships due to wrong policies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government.”By imposing tax on petrol and diesel it has caused lots of hardship to the common people. Crores of in India have lost their jobs and livelihood. Hardship of the common man has only worsened. Instead of giving relief to the common people, the government has increased the prices of petrol and diesel while the crude oil prices in world market are on the lowest side today,” Bhalla said.
The senior Congress leader Yogesh Sawhney said that the party will hold such demonstrations until the government realises it’s grave mistake and reverses its decisions.
Sawhney said “Blocks will continue resisting price rise in diesel and petrol because it directly affects the poor and the common man in an already problematic situation. People of Jammu are already enduring other hardships. The government is only adding on to these problems, instead of resolving them.” The Former Minister also commented on the helpless condition of the people of Jammu who are continuously suffering under the burden of price rises, toll plazas and lack of any financial help.
“Petrol price was unchanged on Wednesday after 17 consecutive increases, while diesel rates were increased by 48 paise per litre across the country for a record 18th day in a row. The increase in diesel price will burden the expenses in general as the price of every other item will increase,”, added Sawhney. “For the first time, Diesel has become costlier than petrol in many areas after prices were hiked for seventeen- eighteen days in a row. The Modi Government is making people suffer. Instead of providing relief, it has increased prices of an important commodity. Thus, Congress leaders will take a stand against the government in this matter until the government readily reduces the prices.” added Sawhney.
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