Congress attacks BJP-ruled states

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New Delhi, Jun 6 (UNI) The Congress today criticised the BJP-ruled states for not announcing any relief to the common man from yesteday's fuel price hike, and said the credentials of the main opposition party vis-a-vis national interests were under suspicion.

"There comes a stage when you have to put the interests of the nation first," AICC Spokesman Manish Tewari told mediapersons, while referring to the 'attitude' of the BJP.

In this context, he said the Congress-ruled states had demonstrated their concern for the 'aam aadmi' by giving substantial relief. While the Andhra Pradesh government has subsidised the entire hike of Rs 50 in the price of LPG, the Delhi government had given a Rs 40 subsidy.

He said other Congress-ruled states like Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Haryana and Jammu and Kashmir have decided that the common man should not suffer full burden of the fuel price hike. "The Cabinet of some of our states are yet to meet. They will take a decision in their Cabinet meetings." Mr Tewari said if the BJP was seriously concerned about the common people, it should ask its states to do something concrete.

The BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh had already announced that it would not reduce Sales Tax or VAT on petroleum products. "They are more interested in staging street plays on bicycles." On the nation-wide stir by the Left parties on fuel price hike issue, Mr Tewari said, "those who resort to bandh to disrupt normal life should consider the fact that international circumstances forced a situation which went beyond the control of the government." Referring to BJP's demand for resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh owning responsibility for the fuel price hike, Mr Tewari said the UPA had maintained a growth rate of 9 per cent in the last four years. In agriculture also, there is upward movement.

"The economic management of the UPA has been excellent." He said the fuel hike was a hard decision taken under a difficult situation.

UNI SH BDP UCS2005

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