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Congress to protest fuel price hike

IANS | New Delhi |

The Congress on Friday demanded the withdrawal of central excise duties and other taxes on petrol and diesel and said it will hold a demonstration at Jantar Mantar here on Wednesday to press for this demand.

Congress spokesperson Ajay Maken said the party unit in Delhi will launch a campaign at petrol pumps across the city to protest the price hike and collect 10 lakh signatures which will be submitted to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

Maken said that considering the fall in the prices of crude oil in the international market, the prices of petrol and diesel should be Rs 34 and Rs 32, respectively.

“While the Narendra Modi government has spelt out absurd reasons like Hurricanes Harvey and Irma for the increase in petrol and diesel prices, it has dealt a devastating blow to the savings of the common people by brazenly increasing central excise duty 11 times in the past 3.5 years,” Maken told the media.

“There has been 133.47 per cent increase in excise duty on petrol and 400.86 per cent on diesel. There was also an increase in VAT of 73.34 per cent on petrol and 91.31 per cent on diesel since May 2014 by the Delhi government,” he added.

Maken said the Modi government has also robbed 18.11 crore LPG consumers by increasing prices of the subsidised cylinder by Rs 75 in the past three years.

“The BJP government has not even spared the poorest of the poor. Kerosene prices have recorded a double-digit growth throughout this fiscal,” he added.