The BJP that came to power criticising the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government at the Centre for ‘high’ fuel prices, was now fleecing the common man with exorbitant prices of fuel despite decline in international crude oil price, said Sivakasi MLA G. Ashokan on Friday.
After staging a protest in front of a petrol bunk in Sivakasi, Congress MLA said that when crude oil price was $130 a barrel under the UPA regime, the prices of petrol and diesel were ₹71 and ₹58 per litre respectively. Under the BJP rule the price of petrol rose to ₹85 a litre when the crude oil price was $30 and has now touched ₹100 a litre when crude oil price was priced at $55.
“The Manmohan Singh government was taxing the affluent through direct taxes and had spared the poor by keeping indirect taxes at a lower rate. But, the Narendra Modi government was just doing the opposite,” Mr. Ashokan said.
Excise duty on fuel had increased at least three times in the last seven years. After fleecing the poor through indirect taxes, the Centre was not ready to pay for vaccines, he charged.
Congress members held protests at 11 places across Madurai district.
Madurai district party president V. Karthikeyan said the protests were held in a peaceful manner at petrol bunks in compliance with COVID-19 safety precautions.
Mr. Karthikeyan said, “though, the people are struggling to make both ends meet due to the financial crisis caused by COVID-19, the Centre is taking no measures to reduce fuel prices.”
Dindigul district president Manikandan organised a protest on the Main Road in the town and demanded that the Centre reduce fuel prices.
In Theni district, Congress district president Jeeva led a protest at a petrol bunk in Chinnamanur.
Congress cadres staged a demonstration in front of a fuel station in Palayamkottai.
Led by the party’s Tirunelveli City district president Sankarapandian, they raised slogans against the fuel price hike.
In Thoothukudi, district president Muralidharan led an agitation.
Led by MLA Palani Nadar, the Congress cadres also staged a demonstration in Tenkasi.
In Nagercoil, the partymen, led by district president Radhakrishnan, staged a demonstration in front of a fuel station near the Collectorate.
The Congress cadre also staged demonstrations at more than 50 places, including Parvathipuram, Chettikulam, Vadaseri, Colachel and Kanniyakumari.
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