AICC general secretary and former Union minister Ajay Maken on Wednesday alleged that the Narendra Modiled Centre increased excise duty by 247% on petrol in the past seven years.
Maken claimed that in April 2014, under the Congress-led UPA, the excise on petrol was Rs 9.48 per litre while today it stands at Rs 32.90. He said the increase in excise duty on diesel is also substantial. In April 2014, excise duty on diesel was Rs 3.56 per litre, which presently is Rs 31.80, he said.
“The Narendra Modi government is the most expensive since Independence,” Maken said, while speaking to the media at the PCC headquarters here on Wednesday afternoon.
“Petrol and diesel have crossed Rs100, edible oil costs Rs 200 and LPG is more than Rs800 per cylinder. They spoke of ‘ache din’ but gave the people spiralling inflation. For BJP, mahangai dayen (the inflation witch) looks like an apsara (fairy)”, Maken said.
Maken said that income of 97% people, whether salaried or self-employed, have decreased and the government cannot hide behind the excuse of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The reduction in salaries and income is not just because of the pandemic. Even before the pandemic, wrong policies of the Union government led to lower GDP growth. In 2019-20, the GDP growth had sunk to 4.1%, while in the Congress regime, the GDP had never fallen below 8%,” the AICC general secretary said.
“The government must bring petrol and diesel under the GST. It would decrease fuel prices by Rs40 per litre. If every other commodity can be linked to GST, why not petrol and diesel?” Maken asked.