GUWAHATI: Assam BJP chief Bhabesh Kalita said tripling on two-wheelers would be allowed when the price of petrol goes up to Rs 200 a litre in the state.
"Three persons will be allowed to ride a two-wheeler after the price of petrol rises to Rs 200 a liter in the state. However, permission has to be obtained from the government," Kalita was quoted as saying by the local media.
He purportedly made the bizarre statement at an event at Tamulpur in lower Assam.
The 49-year-old is a former minister who was appointed as the state BJP president in June this year.
The Congress wondered if he was serious or he said it for some fun.
"It is a matter of grave concern that the president of the ruling BJP Mr Bhabesh Kalita is making such an outlandish statement. Did he make the statement out of fun or he wanted to be funny? Or did he really say it seriously?" wondered Bobbeeta Sharma, who is the Assam Congress' media department chairperson.
Whatever may be his reason, the very fact that he is making such incredulous statements on rising fuel prices expresses deep disrespect and insensitivity to the hardship faced by the common people due to rising prices of fuel and essential commodities, Sharma said.
She reminded Kalita of the protests which the BJP had staged as an opposition party when petrol prices were way below Rs 100 a litre.
"Does he even remember the 'Achhe Din' that was promised by PM Narendra Modi? Does he remember how the BJP leadership at the centre and the state sat with gas cylinders and wear onion garlands? Does he remember how they rode bullock carts in protest? Instead of keeping a steady rate of price of fuel and gas cylinder, they are increasing it day by day even when international crude oil price was lower but the benefit was not passed on to the consumers," the Congress leader said.
Petrol was sold at Rs 101.80 and diesel Rs 94.27 a litre in Guwahati on Tuesday.