The government has finally paid heed to the growing prices of petrol and diesel in the nation and has decided to cut down the price in the wake of upcoming assembly elections. The people’s frustration and the opposition asking questions from the government had led to this decision.
Although the government had been arranging meetings regarding reducing excise duty on fuel for the past two months, the implementation has been made seeing the anger of the people against the government and its probable adverse impact on the votes in the upcoming assembly polls in 4 states.
Earlier this week, petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan ,Arun Jaitley and railway minister Piyush Goyal held a meeting with BJP chief Amit Shah who then talked to PM Modi about the seriousness of the issue.
After PM gave his nod, the centre announced a cut in excise duty by Rs 1.5 per litre of petrol and diesel, each, while oil marketing companies would reduce the prices by a rupee per litre. The state governments also announced a reduction in VAT after Modi asked BJP-ruled states to do so. Before this announcement, some states like Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Kerala and Rajasthan had already reduced the VAT.
This will build a pressure on TRS led government in Telangana to cut the VAT otherwise the opposition might rake up this issue during election campaign.
Lately, Social media is flooded with Modi’s pre-2014 election speeches, where he had criticized the UPA government vehemently for increase in petrol and diesel prices and falling rupee. Congress President Rahul Gandhi had also questioned the central government on the continuously rise in fuel prices,
It is to be noted that the decision to reduce oil price comes just before the Election Commission formally announces the poll schedule for Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Telangana and Mizoram, as once the MCC had been implemented, the government would have to take permission from EC to take this measure.