The escalating attack on the government over the steep rise of fuel price, Shiv Sena on Wednesday questioned the Center whether the hike in the rates is due to the need to pay for interest on the loan taken from Japan for the bullet train project.
The party led by Uddhav Thackeray has been targeting the Modi government since the petrol and fuel prices jumped up despite a slump in global crude oil prices. Days back, the Sena claimed that the ‘unreasonable’ hike in fuel prices was the main reason behind the farmers suicides in the country.
In a fresh jibe at the government, an editorial published in Shiv Sena’s mouthpiece ‘Saamana’, mentioned, “Those in the government are not ready to speak on inflation and do not want others to talk as well. The common man is bearing the brunt of fuel prices going through the roof. If people in government support the 20 times hike in fuel prices in the last four months, it is not correct.”
Further lashing out at the government, the Sena editorial said, “During the UPA regime, crude oil prices were 130 dollars a barrel, yet petrol and diesel prices were never increased more than Rs 70 and Rs 53 per litre respectively. Yet the opposition hit the streets to protest the high prices and even disrupted the Parliament. Today crude oil prices are at 49.89 dollars a barrel. Yet, people are not getting the benefits of low prices. Instead, petrol is being sold at Rs 80 and diesel at Rs 63 per litre. This is like looting the people.”
Claiming that the prices of the cooking gas had increased by about 15 times, Sena said, “In the Congress regime, cooking gas prices never went beyond Rs 320 per cylinder. Today, an LPG cylinder costs Rs 785. The prime minister wants to give us a bullet train, that is his dream. But today, people do not have enough money to fill two litres petrol in their scooters and cars.”
Earlier, Sena slammed the government over Union Minister Alphons Kannathanam’s controversial comments on the fuel price hikes. Amid nationwide outrage on the price hikes, Kannathanam had said, “Who buys petrol? Somebody who has a car or bike. Certainly, he’s not starving. People who can afford to pay should pay.”