Taking a cue from the Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh governments, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday, September 11 said that her government has decided to slash fuel prices by Re 1 per litre. The move will come into effect from midnight. Earlier the Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh governments had reduced fuel prices by Rs 2.5 per litre and Rs 2 per litre, respectively.
According to media reports, Banerjee blamed the Narendra Modi lead Central government for not being able to control the increasing fuel prices. "In January 2016, the petrol price was Rs 65.12, now it is crossing Rs 81.60. The government increased it by Rs 16.48 per litre," Business Today quoted her as saying. The chief minister also said that the prices of diesel have also skyrocketed and there has been a hefty increase of Rs 24.46 per litre in the price of diesel since January.
"We (the state government) have not increased sales tax and cess in past so many years. Some states that are going for polls have reduced the prices but we have limited income and revenue. We will have to take a step, keeping the common people in mind. The Central government has been taxing heavily so we have decided to reduce the fuel prices by Re 1 per litre," Banerjee was quoted as saying by Business Today.
Banerjee's Trinamool Congress had not participated in the nation wide shutdown held by opposition parties on Monday. She had said that even though her party supported the issue, it did not support the bandh.
On Sunday the Vasundhara Raje led Rajasthan government had announced a 4 percent reduction in value-added tax (VAT) on petrol and diesel. The Andhra Pradesh government had also passed a resolution in the state assembly to slash the prices of petrol and diesel by Rs 2 per litre on Monday, September 10. While the move will cost the Rajasthan government around Rs 2,000 crore due to reduction in fuel prices, the Andhra Pradesh government will face a loss of around Rs 1,120 crore.