‘Bharat Bandh’: partial success in Dimapur
Eastern Mirror Desk
Dimapur, Sep. 10: The Nagaland Pradesh Congress Committee (NPCC) also took to protest in Dimapur against the hike in fuel prices, and demanding for petrol and diesel to be brought under the ambit of the Goods and Services Tax (GST).
Shops in downtown Dimapur remained open in the morning. But by around noon, most business establishments were shut.
During a press conferencing at the NPCC’s office in Dimapur, the party’s president, K Therie, stated that “The number one objective was to bring petrol, diesel, and LPG under GST which will reduce prices by at least INR 10-15.”
Stating that the BJP government in Rajasthan had announced tax cuts on petrol and diesel, which led to prices falling by INR two per litre, he wondered why the Nagaland government could not do the same.
“We appeal for the reduction of VAT and Central Excise to ease the burden on the common man, adding that since 2014 it has increased by 211.7% on petrol and 443.06% on diesel and on LPG,” Therie said.
Therie made a comparison between the Manmohan Singh government and the Narendra Modi government: during the time of the former, fuel prices in Delhi were lower than those at present in spite of the high crude prices. He said that during the United Progressive Alliance’s tenure, crude price was USD 107.09, petrol price at INR 71.41 and diesel 55.49 as per May 16 2014. However, as of September 6, the present BJP government, with a low crude price of USD 73.00, petrol prices escalated to INR 79.51 and diesel to INR 71.55.
Therie said that prices including those for transportation had gone up affecting the economy, especially the less privileged. “Who is paying this money? Every citizen, every household is paying for it,” he remarked.
The general secretary of the NPCC GK Zhimomi maintained that the strike was purely voluntary as the issues not only concerned the Congress party but people from all sections of the society. He mentioned that banners at fuel stations were found removed this morning, he said that the police commissioner had acknowledged the issue and assured proper investigation. “The constitution has granted us freedom of speech and also voice of dissent but some unscrupulous elements provoked us. However, the party did the job democratically,” he said.
Earlier in the day, officials of the NPCC led by their president, K Therie, and General Secretary GK Zhimomi marched to the police commissioner’s office where they submitted a memorandum. The party claimed that the banners put up at various locations, especially at more than 50 fuel stations yesterday, were found removed in the morning. They alleged that it was the government agencies that were at fault, and for which a compliant had been registered.
“It was politically motivated. Public won’t do like this because they also want the prices to be cut down,” Zhimomi said.