Tripura to urge PM for further subsidy on LPG in Northeast

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Agartala, Jun 12 (UNI) The ruling and Opposition members of Tripura Assembly today demanded that the Centre give a subsidy of Rs 51 on LPG, and decided to send a proposal to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in this regard on June 24.

However, the Congress MLAs were opposed to the move initially citing the reason that Centre was already giving Rs 250 subsidy per cylinder countrywide and now it was the duty of the state government to take the burden of the rest of the amount. But finally, they relented after Chief Minister Manik Sarkar assured to reconsider the issue.

With the demand from Opposition MLAs, Mr Sarkar assured today in the state Assembly that taking the cue from Delhi and Andhra Pradesh, the state government would consider the proposal of subsidy on cooking gas (LPG).

Reacting to the motion raised by opposition Congress MLA Gopal Roy, Mr Sarkar said the state government had been getting only four per cent VAT on LPG and there was no scope for giving tax grant.

''Tripura does not have any revenue source other than tax collection and on LPG the state is collecting only the minimum amount of VAT, which cannot be reduced further as per the central law,'' Mr Sarkar said, adding that the government had already announced tax grant of five and 2.5 per cent on petrol and diesel respectively.

In the meantime, CPI (M) MLA Sudhan Das proposed the House to send a unanimous demand to the Centre for subsidising the entire hiked amount of Rs 51 to all Northeastern states, including Tripura, considering the economic condition of the region.

However, Opposition members refused to support the move and demanded the state's action on it, following which Chief Minister assured the House that the cabinet would discuss the matter again before June 24.

Congress MLA Sudip Roy Barman requested the Chief Minister to assess the total financial burden on the government before sending the request to the Centre and if possible the state could bear the burden by adopting some austerity measures.

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