UPA finds sole supporter in Samajwadi party over petrol price hike

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New Delhi, Jun 4 (UNI) Isolated on the issue of rise in fuel prices announced today, the UPA Government found a sole supporter in the Samajwadi Party, who said the rise in the petrol and diesel prices was a necessary step that could not be postponed further.

Senior SP leader and chief whip of the party in the Lok Sabha Mohan Singh told UNI that his party did not consider the Rs five per litre rise in the price of petrol and Rs three in diesel as atrocious as it was a fallout of rise in international prices, and a must to check further loss to the oil marketing companies.

He, however, found the rise of Rs 50 per cylinder in the LPG prices as very high and demanded its reduction. Expressing strong opposition, he said, ''It would hurt the middle class households.'' He also welcomed the Government's decision to spare kerosene.

''The prices have been hiked at one go which was not fair,'' he said and urged the Government to review its decision.

Mr Singh felt that the Government should reduce taxes to control the prices.

The SP and the Congress have recently been coming closer after a long spell of bitter relations that had peaked in the Centre's move to dismiss the Mulayam Singh Government in Uttar Pradesh before the last Assembly elections.

The new found bonhomie between the two parties is being seen by political analysts as a result of the common threat they face from the BSP.

UNI NAZ GL ND1816

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