Saturday, 17 July 2021 | PNS | Dehradun
Former deputy chief minister of Rajasthan and senior leader of Congress party Sachin Pilot said that the Narendra Modi government has raised the prices of petrol and diesel 66 times in the last six months. Addressing the media persons at Congress Bhawan here on Friday, the Congress leader claimed that the Modi government has collected a sum of Rs 25 lakh crore by increasing excise on petrol and diesel in the last seven years. Accusing the government of ignoring the plight of general public reeling under the onslaught of pandemic of Covid-19, Pilot said that instead of providing relief the government has gone on a price increasing spree. He said that increase in fuel prices has an escalating effect on the prices of everything. The Congress leader claimed that apart from increasing excise on petrol and diesel the Modi government has imposed cess on them. “ The collection from cess goes entirely into the kitty of the Union government and this government is collecting Rs 33 and Rs 32 on every litre of petrol and diesel sold,’’ he said.
Comparing the fuel prices during the Modi government with that of Congress led government Pilot said the petrol was priced at Rs 71 and diesel at Rs 57 during UPA government and the international price of crude at that time was at $ 108 per barrel. He said that now the prices of Petrol have shot past Rs 100 mark in 250 cities of the country. The Congress leader accused the BJP government of not reducing the prices of petrol and diesel when the prices of crude were at their lowest. He said that a cylinder of cooking gas was priced at Rs 414 on the last day of UPA government and now one cylinder costs more than Rs 900.
He claimed that the indigenous production of fossil fuels has reduced during the Modi regime and there is a less emphasis on oil exploration in the country now. Pilot said that in the year 2014 the indigenous production accounted for 24 percent of total fuel consumption and now it has come down to 18 percent. He added that the ONGC was forced to infuse Rs 24000 Crore into Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation (GSPC).
The Congress leader also attacked the Modi government for rising unemployment. “This government has claimed to provide employment to two Crore people every year but in the last two months alone two Crore jobs were lost. The Congress leader also accused the Union government for adopting a partisan attitude towards the Congress ruled states.
Launching an attack on the BJP for instability in Uttarakhand which had given it an overwhelming majority in the elections of 2017, Pilot said that the party has given three Chief Ministers but the woes of the general public has increased in the last four years.
The Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) president Pritam Singh, Manglaur MLA and secretary All India Congress Committee (AICC) Qazi Nizamuddin and other Congress leaders were present on the occasion.