Ask Amarinder Singh government to slash Rs 20 per litre VAT on petrol, diesel: Majithia to Jakhar

Speaking about the "orchestrated protests" by the Congress, former minister Bikram Singh Majithia said it was incumbent on Jakhar to tell Punjabis why he was indulging in "deceitful" behaviour.

Published: 12th June 2018 12:25 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th June 2018 12:25 AM   |  A+A-

Bikram Singh Majithia (File Photo)

By PTI

CHANDIGARH: The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) today asked Punjab Congress chief Sunil Jakhar to stop "sham" protests on the issue of lowering taxes on petrol and diesel and instead put pressure on his party's Amarinder Singh government to slash VAT on these products to give an instantaneous relief of Rs 20 per litre to the common man.

Speaking about the "orchestrated protests" by the Congress, former minister Bikram Singh Majithia said it was incumbent on Jakhar to tell Punjabis why he was indulging in "deceitful" behaviour.

"You want the Centre to reduce excise on petrol and diesel which it is already examining but refuse to put pressure on your own government to reduce state tax on both these products which is the highest in north India and the third highest in the country," Majithia said.

He said the state government was charging over Rs 20 tax on petrol and diesel and this could be done away with by one stroke of the pen.

The SAD leader said Jakhar should tell Punjabis why he had "accepted" the contention of Punjab Finance Minister Manpreet Badal that he would not reduce VAT on petrol and diesel by even one paisa.

Jakhar had earlier announced that the Congress government would reduce VAT on petrol and diesel on the pattern of the relief given by Kerala, the Akali leader said.

"However, after Manpreet Badal refused to reduce petrol and diesel prices he has started indulging in meaningless protests to gain cheap publicity instead of taking on the finance minister and asking why no relief is being extended to the common man. Punjabis are feeling cheated by these double-faced actions", Majithia claimed.

Speaking about the state government's decision to delay paddy transplantation to June 20 "without consulting" farmers, the SAD leader said such decisions were symptomatic of Congress rule.

He said the government seemed to be multiplying the problems of farmers who were committing suicide in large numbers after it cheated and betrayed them by refusing to implement the comprehensive Rs 90,000 crore loan waiver as promised.

Now another crisis had been triggered by delaying paddy transplantation inordinately, he said.

Late transplantation will result in increased moisture content and will make Punjab paddy virtually unsaleable, he added.

Majithia said the government should ensure uninterrupted eight-hour power supply to the farm sector.

"If this is not done, large swathes where paddy is being sown since the last two days will dry up resulting in a monumental human tragedy," he added.

Majithia asked Jakhar to utilise his time in a better manner and brief the Punjab government about these emergent issues instead of trying to "befool" the people.

"Please be sensitive towards the needs of farmers as well as the common man and stop your government from implementing inhuman dictatorial decisions without building consensus on them," the Akali leader added.

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