Telangana’s Industry and Commerce Minister K.T. Rama Rao on Sunday demanded the Narendra Modi-led Central government scrap the cess on fuel, saying this will bring down the prices to 2014 level.
He was reacting to the Centre’s move to slash the excise duty on petrol and diesel and the subsequent demands by the opposition in the state that the state government also cut Value Added Tax (VAT) on fuel to ease the burden on common man.
Rama Rao tweeted that crude prices in May 2014 and now in May 2022 are almost the same yet petrol was Rs 70 per litre then and Rs 120 now. “Telangana VAT has remained unchanged. So what & who caused price rise & who is responsible,” he asked.
KTR, as the minister is popularly known, pointed out that special additional excise duty, road and infrastructure cess, agriculture and infrastructure development cess all unilaterally imposed by the Union government are responsible for hike. “Revenues from above are NOT shared with states If CESS are scrapped, Fuel prices will be at 2014 level,” he added.
The Centre on Saturday announced Rs 8 per litre cut in excise duty on petrol and Rs 6 on diesel.
“There was this shopkeeper next to my school who used to hike the prices by 300% during peak season & then just to hoodwink people, slash it by 30% & his cronies would start hailing it as a bumper offer & thank him! Sounds familiar? Who increased the prices in the first place?,” asked KTR.