J&K Cong stages sit-in against fuel price hike

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Jammu, Feb 10 (PTI) The Jammu and Kashmir Congress Wednesday staged a sit-in outside the party headquarters here against the BJP-led Centre over the 'incessant hike' in the prices of petrol, diesel and cooking gas.

The protest was organised by Jammu district Congress committee (Urban) and was led by senior party leaders including former minister Raman Bhalla.

Carrying placards denouncing the 'unprecedented and unjustified' hike, the participants chanted slogans against the BJP government and demanded immediate rollback of the prices.

Bhalla lashed out at the Centre over the rise in petrol and diesel prices and claimed that the excise duty on diesel has been hiked by 820 per cent and petrol by 258 per cent in the last six years.

'Where has the government spent Rs 20 lakh crore that it collected by multiple hikes in excise duty on both petrol and diesel,' he asked.

The Congress leader also targeted the government for steep hike in the prices of LPG cylinders and accused it of 'looting' poor people by raising the fuel prices.

'The incessant hike in fuel prices is an additional burden on the common people who are at the limit of their woes owing to the Covid-19 induced lockdown for months,' Bhalla said.

He said the poor and the middle class have been severely hit by the recent hikes. J&K Pradesh Congress Committee Chief spokesman Ravinder Sharma said the BJP's claim of providing 'pro-people' governance stands exposed as the Central government has allegedly failed miserably to address the issues affecting the general public.

'The common man is going through the worst sufferings under the current dispensation which has sold its soul to a few businessmen, ignoring the agonies of the countrymen,' he alleged.

He said the country is presently going through a 'state of crisis'.

'The graph of the inflation is on a constant rise, the fuel prices have touched the sky, and tens of lakhs of the farmers across the country are protesting for the last two and a half months for repeal of three farm laws aiming at snatching their right over their own lands.

'The victims of these three issues are the common men, the countrymen who are the true sons of the soil,' Sharma said. PTI TAS AB TIR TIR