Minutes after the Government took the unpopular decision of raising the diesel price and capping the number of subsidised domestic LPG cylinders available to six, political leaders across parties, voiced their dissent against the move.

Mamata Banerjee, West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief, sought a roll back. She said: “The matter is very serious and sensitive. We will discuss in our party meeting and our plan of action.”

Yashwant Sinha, former finance minister and BJP leader: “This is going to cause undue hardship.”

Akhilesh Yadav, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and Samajwadi Party leader: “It will hurt the common man. Gurudas Dasgupta, CPI leader: We will protest in every way we can.”

From the industry side:

CII Director-General Mr Chandrajit Banerjee on the price hike:

“The decision of the government to hike diesel prices and LPG are borne out of necessity. CII fully understands the economic compulsions for such a decision. Rationalisation of fuel subsidies is a necessity from the point of fiscal consolidation and therefore, CII congratulates the Government on this bold decision.”

Pravin Shah, Chief Executive, Mahindra Automotive said that the diesel price hike had been much awaited since the petrol prices had been already increased. “I don't think it will have an impact on demand. There are other things such as high interest rates affecting demand more.” Over 95 per cent of Mahindra's sales account for diesel vehicles.

Sugato Sen, Senior Director at SIAM said that the increase should have been in shorter spells of Rs 1 to 2 so that customers could have absorbed it better

(This article was published on September 13, 2012)
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