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JAMMU, Mar 16: “Despite a precipitous fall in the global prices of crude oil, the BJP govt at the centre had failed to effect any corresponding reduction in the prices of petrol and diesel thereby continuing with its policy of increased taxation on essential commodities as a measure of resource mobilization. The decline in the global prices is being neutralized by increasing taxes and cesses on petrol and diesel thereby creating nationwide resentment against the centre govt. The latest increase in excise duty by Rs. 3 per litre effected yesterday on petrol and diesel is unacceptable and amply demonstrates the disregard of the BJP govt towards the concerns of the middle classes and other economically marginalized sections of society. More importantly the increase in taxation, at a time when the people were facing worst economic distress due to Corona Virus pandemic, only revealed the insensitivity of the BJP govt”. This was stated by Mr. Harsh Dev Singh JKNPP Chairman and former Minister. He was addressing a press conference in Jammu today.
Strongly condemning the ruling dispensation for huge taxation on petrol and diesel, Mr. Singh said that while crude oil cost in the global market was Rs. 17.79 per litre, the consumers are being charged over Rs. 70 litre for petrol and over Rs. 63 per litre for diesel. And all this notwithstanding the fact that the rate of crude oil has drastically fallen from Rs. 30.08 per litre to Rs. 17.79 per litre after March 12. He said that such enhanced prices of fuel in India was the cumulative effect of huge taxation in the form of excise duty, road cess and VAT imposed by the BJP led govt at the centre together with huge margins of oil companies. He said that the total taxation on petrol was Rs. 37.89 in Modi rule as against Rs. 9.48 per litre prior to 2014. While the Modi govt had replaced VAT by GST on all other items, it had deliberately kept petrol and diesel outside the purview of GST only to impose multiple taxation on these products and thereby continue to generate funds by taking benefit of fluctuating global prices of crude oil, said Singh.
Accusing the BJP govt of filling its own coffers at the cost of the common man and denying the benefits of declining prices which had naturally accrued to the economically weaker sections, Mr. Singh said that it had most shamelessly betrayed the sentiments of the marginalized sections across the nation.
Not only was petrol and diesel being provided at exorbitant rates by the present regime, the prices of other essential commodities like cooking gas and eatables had also sky rocketed during the BJP led govt, maintained Singh . The vegetables, the pulses, foodgrains and other items of day to day use had witnessed steep rise in their prices thus making the life of common man miserable. The rates of cooking gas were increased by Rs. 145 per cylinder thereby making a mockery of free gas connections scheme launched by the centre. And now a further move of hiking GST on mobile phones from 12% to 18% by the Union Finance Minister, could make things difficult for consumers and even worse for the BJP govt, asserted Singh.
Parshotam Parihar State Secretary-PTU, Mr. Surinder Chouhan District President Jammu Rural-JKNPP and Gurdeep Singh Raju District Secretary Jammu Urban-JKNPP were also present in the press conference.
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