Anger against govt over price hike: Cong leader

Congress leader Anil Shastri said, "Common man is awaiting govt`s decision to roll back petrol prices."

New Delhi: After party MP Praveen Aron, it was the turn of senior Congress leader Anil Shastri to voice his concern over the petrol price hike, an issue which has led to quite unease in a section of the party.

"Common man is awaiting govt`s decision to roll back petrol prices. There`s great anger against the govt on its decision to increase prices," Shastri, who is a special invitee to Congress Working Committee, said on the microblogging site Twitter.

A day after the steepest-ever petrol price hike was announced on May 23, Congress MP Praveen Aron had expressed his disagreement with the decision and urged Congress President Sonia Gandhi to direct the government to have a rethink on deregulation of prices of petroleum products.

Quite a number of MPs, speaking on condition of anonymity, have expressed discomfiture over the move at at time when the party and the government were receiving battering from all sides.

Party spokesperson Manish Tewari, however, expressed satisfaction that the government has taken the sensitivities of the party in account.

Reacting to the statement of Petroleum Minister S Jaipal Reddy that the government was not considering raising rates of diesel, domestic gas (LPG) and kerosene for the moment, Tewari said that Reddy has taken into account the sensitivities of the party.

Tewari also said that the party is satisfied that the Centre has decided to take some step in consultations with the the states and the oil companies to provide relief to people.

"We have satisfaction that keeping in mind the sensitivities of the people, the government has listened to us," Tewari said.

Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee will soon write to Chief Ministers to consider cut in sales tax on petrol to partly neutralise the impact of the Rs 7.54-per-litre hike in the price of the auto fuel. Days after raising petrol price, nation`s largest oil firm Indian Oil Corp (IOC) hinted at a Rs 1.25-1.50 per litre cut in rates later this week.


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