Lucknow: Criticising the Congress-led UPA
government for hiking the price of petrol, BSP chief Mayawati
on Wednesday said the party would observe a day-long bandh in Uttar
Pradesh on May 31 to protest the steep hike.
Addressing a meeting of the state`s ministers, MPs, MLAs
and office bearers, the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister asked
them to make the masses aware of the anti-people policies of
the "insensitive" Central government.
Mayawati said by holding dharnas at all district
headquarters in the state, BSP would begin a nation-wide
agitation against the alleged anti-people decisions and flawed
economic policy of the UPA government, a press release issued
by the party said.
Questioning the timing of latest hike, she said though
the international rates of crude oil shot up to Rs 120 per
barrel in February this year, the price was not increased as
Assembly elections were scheduled in five states.
"Now when the prices have come down to Rs 99 per barrel,
the Central government has increased the price. This proves
that the decision is guided by selfish and political motives,"
The chief minister claimed that had the Union government,
which is surrounded by scams, been really sympathetic to the
common people, it would have utilised some part of the Rs 4.5
lakh crore it provides to corporate houses to keep petrol
prices under control.
"Petrol prices have been hiked 12 times since April 1,
2008. There are indications that the prices of diesel and LPG
will also be hiked any time now, adding to the problems of the
middle and poor classes," she claimed.
Mayawati also claimed that the BSP government in the
state had taken various steps to keep prices under check, such
as lowering VAT on diesel and kerosene.
She alleged that the Centre had been meting out step
motherly treatment to the state and had turned down all its
demands for special packages for the state`s development.