Petrol hike: CPI(M) says `callous`, BJP demands rollback

Opposition parties--BJP and CPI(M)—on Saturday slammed as "callous" and a "cruel blow" on the common man the Centre`s decision to raise petrol prices and demanded a rollback in the hike.

Last Updated: Jan 15, 2011, 22:24 PM IST

New Delhi/Kolkata: Opposition parties--BJP
and CPI(M)—on Saturday slammed as "callous" and a "cruel blow" on
the common man the Centre`s decision to raise petrol prices
and demanded a rollback in the hike.

BJP said the seventh hike in the last six months was
totally unjustified and amounted to a loot of the common man
and that it is the "worst gift" that a government can give
to the people in the New Year.

CPI-M called upon its state units to launch an
immediate protest.

"This hike is totally unjustified. This is nothing but
loot of the common man by the government. A product which
costs Rs 30 is being sold at Rs 60, which is a 100 per cent
taxation. We call for its rollback," BJP spokesperson Prakash
Javadekar said in New Delhi.

He said the ground of under-recovery by the oil
companies cited by the government as the reason for the hike
is not true.

"This is the seventh hike in the last six months. Only
last month there was an increase of Rs 3 per litre... oil
companies are earning profits and giving dividends while still
showing under-recovery," Javadekar said. in New Delhi.

He expressed fear that now even diesel prices may go
up.

"Food inflation is at 18 percent while inflation is at
9 percent. This is the worst gift that a government can give
to the people in New Year," Javadekar said.

The CPI-M Politburo said the hike showed how the UPA
government was riding roughshod over the interests of the
people.

"The Politburo calls upon all its Party units to
immediately protest the callous hike," the CPI(M)`s highest
policy-making body, which is having a meeting in Kolkata, said
in a statement.

"This cruel blow makes a mockery of all the assurances
of the government to take steps to curb price rise. The people
of this country will not take such burdens on them quietly,"
the statement said.

PTI