New Delhi: Attacking the Centre over the hike in price of domestic LPG cylinders, the Congress on Wednesday termed it an “anti-people” decision and said the BJP-led government is running a “bulldozer of inflation” over people’s budget.
The Opposition party vowed to hit the streets from Thursday against the “Modi-made inflation.
The rate of domestic liquefied petroleum gas cylinders was on Wednesday hiked by Rs 50, a third increase in rates since May.
Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi attacked the government over the issue, accusing the BJP dispensation of managing headlines but mismanaging the economy.
“Headlines Managed. Economy Mismanaged,” Gandhi tweeted, with a photo with text to suggest the BJP’s stance on inflation and the depreciation of Indian currency changed after it came to power.
Attacking the government, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said the prices of crude oil are continuously falling in the international market but the government is increasing the prices of LPG.
“Today again the price of LPG cylinder has been raise by Rs 50. The price of 5-kg cylinder was also raised by Rs 18. The government is bulldozing people’s budget through inflation,” he said in a tweet in Hindi.
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said in a tweet the BJP spoke of welfare of the poor at its national executive meeting while imposing five per cent “Gabbar Singh Tax (GST)” on flour, cereals, curd and paneer, and then broke the back of the poor and middle class by raising the LPG price.
At a press conference at the Congress headquarters here, party spokesperson Ragini Nayak said it is a big surprise under Prime Minister Modi’s rule if the prices of petrol and diesel do not increase and inflation does not break their back.
“The biggest achievement of Prime Minister Modi is that he has been successful in deceiving the country on every front. The prime minister, who once talked about showing red eyes to China, when will he show red eyes to inflation, the country is waiting for it,” Nayak said.
“At the time of Manmohan ji, the Congress government used to buy (essential energy products) at an expensive rate and sell it cheap to the public. But now, despite everything being cheap in the international market, it is being sold expensive to the public,” she said.
Nayak also slammed the government over implementation of the Ujjwala scheme and asked who can buy such an expensive LPG cylinder.
She also hit out at the government citing media reports which claimed that 3.59 crore customers could not afford a refill in 2021-22.
Nayak also hit out at the government for its decision to withdraw GST exemptions on items such as pre-packed wheat flour, curd and buttermilk.
The Congress party will lodge its protest across the country not only through press conferences but by agitations against the ever-increasing inflation and the levying GST on the essentials of daily life, Nayak said.
It will raise the voice of the people from the streets to parliament, she asserted.
Taking a dig at the government, the All India Mahila Congress said in a tweet, “Another Rs 50 hike in LPG Gas Cylinder! Is this the cost of toppling the Maharashtra Government?”
The attack comes days after Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde won a crucial confidence vote in the state Assembly, cementing his grip on power five days after assuming office with BJP support following a revolt in the Shiv Sena.
The Congress has accused the BJP of engendering the revolt.
Congress spokesperson Shama Mohamed said LPG price has spiked from Rs 834 to Rs 1,053 in one year.
“This is at a time when food inflation and unemployment are at a record high. Does the BJP govt want to save its rich friends or the common man!” she said.
Non-subsidised LPG will now cost Rs 1,053 per 14.2-kg cylinder, according to a price notification of oil companies.
Non-subsidised LPG rate is the one that common household users pay. Ujjwala beneficiaries are the only ones who get subsidies.
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