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No reduction in tax on petro products

Written by: Staff

Chennai, Jun 7: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi has turned down the suggestion made by AIADMK General Secretary J Jayalalithaa to reduce sales tax on diesel and petrol to ensure that people were not affected by the fuel price hike.

''Did the previous government pay heed when I made the suggestion? They didn't and now their reply is mine too,'' he told newspersons at the airport here on his arrival from Delhi last night.

He, however, said there would be no increase in the bus fare in the state in the wake of the oil price hike.

Describing as ''productive'' his maiden visit to the national capital after assuming office for the fifth time, the Chief Minister pointed out that the state's annual plan for the current fiscal had been finalised at Rs 12,500 crore, an increase of Rs 3,400 over the previous year, including central assistance.

Members of the Planning Commission welcomed many of the progressive aspects in the DMK election manifesto, especially those that were aimed at the poor and downtrodden in society, he said.

He said the Centre had also increased the offtake of kerosene to the state by 16,000 kilo litres per month. At present, 60,000 kl of kerosene was being allocated.

Mr Karunanidhi said Railway Minister Lalu Prasad had assured him that steps would be taken to speed up the progress of work on four railway schemes in the state, including doubling of lines between Tirunelveli-Chengalpattu and Chamraj Nagar-Sathyamangalam routes.

The Union Power Minister also promised him to help the state set up two more 500 MW thermal power plants near Chennai and Mettur.

On whether Tamil Nadu Congressmen's dream of power sharing in the state would be translated into a reality, he said ''I will neither call it a dream nor a reality.''


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