New Delhi, June 25 (IANS): The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) today staged a demonstration here against the hike in the prices of diesel, kerosene and cooking gas, with party leaders demanding a rollback.
"Instead of listening to the complaints of the common man, the government is showing a no-mercy attitude by raising the prices of essential commodities," said the BJP's VK Malhotra, Leader of Opposition in the Delhi State Assembly. "The hike in prices of fuel and cooking gas is unjustified," he added.
Shouting slogans against the government and asking the people to join in, the party organised the protest at Jantar Mantar at 11 am. "We demand an immediate rollback of this hike," Malhotra said.
Petroleum Minister S Jaipal Reddy on Friday announced that the price of diesel will be increased by Rs 3 per litre, kerosene by Rs 2 per litre and domestic liquid petroelum gas (LPG) by Rs 50 per cylinder, excluding state levies such as VAT.
The hike came a day after the government announced that food inflation had soared to nearly a 10-week high of 9.13 percent for the week ended June 11.
People voiced their woes after the hike, finding it an additional burden on the house budgets.
"The government says the petroleum companies are incurring a loss, so a hike. What about the loss that we as tax payers are suffering. We can't cut down on our basic needs now," said a miffed Sumati Dewan, housewife in east Delhi's Laxmi Nagar.
Before the hike, oil marketing companies suffered losses of Rs 13.72 per litre of diesel, Rs 26.16 per litre of kerosene and Rs 381.14 per LPG cylinder.
On a daily basis, Indian Oil, Hindustan Petroleum and Bharat Petroleum together incur a total loss of Rs 456 crore on the sale of the three petro-products.