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    BJP slams Government for hike in petrol price

    New Delhi: The BJP on Saturday criticised the hike in petrol price and alleged that the "anti aam-admi" government was waiting for the assembly elections to get over to make the announcement.

    "The BJP strongly condemns this increase in price of petrol. The government which always harps on being with the 'aam admi' (common man) is betraying it. The UPA regime says it does not control price of petrol but kept a check on it till the elections," party spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said.

    He described the price hike a "gift" from the government after the Congress victory in West Bengal and Assam. "This is a joke on the people," he said.

    The main opposition maintained that the government could cut down on some of the central taxes to give relief to the people.

    "In the last two years, the increase in petrol price has been by Rs 23 per litre. This government should realise that when petrol prices go up, then prices of other commodities also go up," Hussain said.

    The BJP will take this issue to the people through agitation on the streets as well as raise it in Parliament.

    "This government has nothing to do with the welfare of the 'aam admi' and is only concerned about votes. Since the UPA came to power in 2004, petrol prices have increased 19 times. In the last nince months the increase has been done nine times," Hussain said.

    Terming the increase in petrol price as "unjustifiable" and "big blow to common man", the Forward Bloc demanded that the government ask oil companies to withdraw the hike.

    "There is no justification for this hike when the crude oil price is comparatively low in the international market...the government must ask the companies to withdraw the hike immediately. The unprecedented huge hike of petrol price is unjustifiable and a big blow to the common men," All India Forward Bloc Secretary G Devarajan said.

    Congress, however, downplayed the opposition criticism saying it's time to take a very sober and rationale view on it.

    "There is a market mechanism, which really determines pricing considering that 80 per cent of crude oil is being imported. So prices move up and move down. It is high time, we took a very sober and rationale view on these processes," party spokesperson Manish Tewari said.