The Congress on Saturday demanded an immediate roll back of the hike in fuel prices a day after the Modi government increased the petrol prices by Rs 3.31 and diesel by Rs 2.71 per litre.
The Congress also accused the Modi government of “profiteering from the misery of ordinary Indians” by repeatedly increasing fuel prices when the global crude prices had dropped 34 per cent when compared with the rates in May last year.
“The Congress party demands that the hike in fuel prices be rolled back with immediate effect and also the hike in excise duty put into effect since November last as well as the customs duty on petroleum products should be withdrawn,” Randeep Surjewala, in-charge of the AICC’s communication department, said in a statement here. He said the hikes were unfathomable on all accounts — especially owing to the fact that the Government and Oil Marketing Companies will be making a windfall gain amounting to more than Rs 2,30,000 crores even as the common man is made to pay.
He recalled that diesel was being sold at Rs 56.71 per litre when the BJP assumed office last year. Similarly, petrol was being sold at Rs 71.41 per litre when the BJP formed the government last year.
Since November last year, the government has increased the excise duty on petrol four times and cumulatively customers have been denied the benefit of Rs 7.75 per litre reduction in petrol and Rs 6.50 a litre cut in diesel rates, the Congress said.
“If the wise BJP government had truly implemented the UPA government’s formula in fixing oil prices, the prices of petrol should have been Rs 46.80 per litre now and the diesel should have been priced at Rs 37.17 per litre. But the BJP government at present was charging Rs 66.29 per litre for petrol and Rs 52.28 for diesel,” Surjewala said.
At the present rates, the middle class families are being charged Rs 19.49 per litre extra for petrol and Rs 15.11 per litre extra for diesel, he said.