Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Tuesday raised the bogey of discrimination against Tamil Nadu by the Centre again.
In a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, she urged him to take immediate action to ensure that the State gets enough kerosene allocation to meet its demand. Jayalalithaa had earlier raised the issue in the Assembly on March 28.
In her letter, Jayalalithaa said Tamil Nadu required 65,140 kilolitres (KL) of kerosene per month, and the allocation of the essential fuel made by the Union Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas had steadily fallen from 52,806 KL per month fixed for April-June 2011 to 44,576 KL for January-March 2012 and further reduced to 42,460 KL for April-June 2012 and then to 39,429 KL per month for July-September 2012.
“I am shocked to learn that now, in the latest order dated 20th March, 2013, this already very low level of allotment has been further drastically slashed to 29,060 KL per month for the April - June, 2013 quarter. This reduction is the biggest cut imposed on any of the States. Tamil Nadu has been singled out for such a drastic reduction. The allotment of kerosene to most other States has been maintained at former levels with virtually no reduction,” Jayalalithaa told the Prime Minister, in her letter.
She further hit out at the system of kerosene allotment for being “opaque and arbitrary”, saying the Centre did not share the rationale behind the allotments with State governments. She also pointed out that the allocations for some States had remained uncut while Tamil Nadu’s had been slashed.
“Given the arbitrariness and opacity that characterises the kerosene allotment decisions and the lack of any specific reasons that have been cited for the drastic reduction in the allotment for Tamil Nadu, all this leads me to wonder why Tamil Nadu is being targeted for such unfair and vindictively harsh treatment by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas. Is the Government of India punishing Tamil Nadu for running one of the most efficient Public Distribution Systems in the country?” asked Jayalalithaa.