BJP, Left slam petrol price hike

The BJP said it would fight against the measure "inside and outside parliament" while the Left called it hypocrisy, coming a day after the election results to five states.

"The petrol price hike exposed the failure of the economist Prime Minister Manmohan Singh," BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad told reporters here.

"It is an attack on the 'aam aadmi (common man)', about whom the ruling alliance speaks so often," he said.

Prasad said that through the price rise, "the Manmohan Singh government was rubbing salt on the wounds of the common people, who are already crushed by the weight of inflation and spiralling  cost of living".

"Instead of giving a healing touch, the government has added to the woes of the consumers and ordinary people," he added.The BJP leader said his party and its allies would fight the price hike "tooth and nail inside and outside parliament".

"We want to know where is Sonia Gandhi, who always speaks about the aam aadmi. And where is that so-called youth icon," he asked, in a reference to Congress leader Rahul Gandhi.

Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader Sitaram Yechury said the price hike was highly condemnable.

"This is a cruel hoax on the common people," he told reporters here.Forward Bloc national secretary G. Devarajan said the government was "indulging in hypocrisy by increasing the prices of petrol just one day after the assembly poll results".

Defending the government, Congress leader Jagadambika Pal said the increase in international prices had "compelled the government to pass on a part of the burden to the customers".

"Still, the government has taken care not to increase the prices of LPG and diesel prices," Pal added.

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