BHUBANESWAR, MAY 31
Protesting rise in fuel price and negligible relief to consumers in the last couple of days, senior leaders of ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) today met the Governor of Odisha and submitted a memorandum to him addressed to the President of India demanding cut on excise duty levied on petrol and diesel by the Central government.
The BJD delegation was led by party vice-president and Rajya Sabha member Prasanna Acharya and comprised party vice-president and senior MLA Debi Prasad Mishra and party general secretary-cum-senior MLA Sanjay Das Burma along with leaders of the party’s youth and students’ wings.
The memorandum stated that over the past four years there has been a drastic increase in prices of petrol and diesel prices which is affecting the lives and livelihood of people across India and particularly in Odisha where all sections of society are severely affected by this phenomenal rise of petroleum prices. “It is unfortunate that the Union government is a mute spectator to this entire price rise and not taking any effective steps to reduce it”, the memorandum stated.
It added that that the party has obtained data and information from the Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell (PPAC) of the Union Petroleum Ministry. “In 2014 when NDA Government came to power, Petrol was priced at Rs. 71.41 per litre in New Delhi. During that period due to the high international crude oil
prices, this price could not be brought down further but with the fall in international oil prices. The NDA Government has not made any effort to pass on the benefits of cheaper fuel to the masses of India”, the memorandum said.
It added that the NDA government had has not reduced the excise duty on petrol and diesel to pass on the benefit to the common people. “Since the NDA Government came to power, the prices of petrol and diesel have increased. There has been an increase of 126 percent in case of excise duty on petrol and an increase of 330 per cent in excise duty for diesel. We hope you would consider our rightful demand for reduction of central excise duty on petrol and diesel keeping the interest of the people of Odisha and India as the foremost priority”, the memorandum stated.
Meanwhile, Odisha BJP Spokesperson Dilip Mohanty said the Centre has been repeatedly suggesting the Chief Minister of Odisha to propose including petrol and diesel under the ambit of GST. “Even Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has already proposed that it should be included in GST. It will be decided in the GST Council and the states should give their unanimous nod. From day one, Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has been batting for the GST proposal and wants that the states should initiate the step accordingly”, he added.