The Congress on Tuesday hurled the “Modi Tax” accusation at the Centre as prices of petroleum products witnessed a sharp increase owing to the steep excise duties levied on fuel.
Congress leaders claimed that the Modi government had collected over Rs 20 lakh crore by imposing additional excise duty on petrol and diesel over the past six years and eight months.
“We demand an immediate withdrawal of this additional 'Modi Tax' imposed over the past six years and eight months. This in itself will reduce petrol price to Rs 61.92 per litre and diesel price to Rs 47.51 per litre,” Congress spokesman Pawan Khera told reporters here.
“The Modi government is determined to loot the common man and ensure the progress of just 'two',” former Congress president Rahul Gandhi said.
The 'Modi Tax' accusation is reminiscent of the 'Jayanthi Tax' charge levelled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the run-up to the 2014 Lok Sabha elections to target the UPA government's then environment minister Jayanthi Natarajan.
Addressing a press conference here, Khera said in May 2014, the global crude price was $108 per barrel and petrol was selling at Rs 71.51 per litre in Delhi while diesel was retailing at Rs 57.28 per litre.
“The international crude oil prices as on February 1, 2021, was $54.41 per barrel and yet as of today, the price of petrol is Rs 89.29 per litre in the national capital whereas diesel is selling at Rs 79.70 per litre,” Khera said.
The Congress leader accused the government of looting the country of 20 lakh crore through high fuel prices.
“Where did this 20 lakh crore go? It’s not been seen in any sector. Can this be termed as a criminal conspiracy to benefit only a few crony friends?” Khera asked.