Congress asks other states to reduce tax on petrol

Congress asks other states to reduce tax on petrol

Taking a tough stand and setting an ‘uncomfortable’ precedent, the governments of Kerala and Uttarakhand on Thursday waived tax on the hiked amount thereby reducing the hike rate by 25 per cent.

The Congress welcomed the decision of the two state governments to cushion the impact of the fuel hike even as the hike of Rs 7.54 per litre of petrol continued to fuel public anger across the country. The Congress leaders asked other states to follow Kerala and Uttarakhand.

“Certain state governments have already taken the lead in rationalising the state taxes on petrol, that is indeed a welcome measure. We do hope that others will follow,” Congress spokesman Manish Tewari told reporters in Delhi.

Compared to other States, petrol prices will be down by Rs 1.63 per litre and Rs 1.87/litre respectively in Congress-led UDF-ruled Kerala and BJP-ruled Uttarakhand.

“UDF government does not justify the Centre’s decision to increase prices. But we are committed to bringing some relief to people so reducing the sales tax on petrol. With this decision, petrol price will come down by Rs 1.63 per litre,” Chief Minister Oommen Chandy told reporters in Thiruvananthapuram after a special cabinet meeting.

Stating that Kerala would stand to lose Rs 218 crore through the decision, he said the state had already asked the Centre to reconsider the petrol price hike. “The government has also decided to introduce austerity measures and to check use of petrol by government offices,” the Chandy said.

The Uttarakhand government decided to waive VAT on the increased amount at a state Cabinet meetingin Dehra Dun late night on Wednesday, official sources said.

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