The BJP and the Congress Friday demanded the Kejriwal government immediately reduce the Value Added Tax (VAT) on petrol and diesel to give relief to people. The Congress also said that the Modi government’s excise duty cuts on fuel prices are too meagre.
Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly and BJP MLA Ramvir Singh Bidhuri said the Kejriwal government must immediately reduce the VAT on petrol and diesel in Delhi by Rs 10 each, claiming it was highest across the country.
He warned Delhi BJP MLAs will protest at the chief minister’s residence on Monday if VAT is not reduced by Sunday.
Mr Bidhuri said the Centre has given “tremendous relief” to people by slashing excise duty by Rs 5 per liter on petrol and Rs 10 per liter on diesel. After this, 13 states and union territories also have reduced VAT, but the Delhi government is still silent on this issue, Mr Bidhuri said in a statement.
“Many states, including Haryana, Bihar, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, and Karnataka, have followed the Centre’s decision, but the Delhi government is not yet ready for it,” he said.
No immediate reaction was available from Delhi government on the issue.
The Centre cut excise duty on petrol on diesel on Wednesday.
Since states charge local sales tax or VAT not just on the base price but also on the excise duty levied by the centre, the total incidence of price reduction is higher.
Petrol now costs Rs 103.97 per litre in Delhi against Rs 110.04 per litre, according to a price notification of state-owned fuel retailers.
Petrol price on Thursday was cut by Rs 6.07 per litre and diesel price by Rs 11.75 in Delhi as oil companies passed on a record reduction in excise duty rates to consumers.
Mr Bidhuri said that in 2018, the Centre had given relief to the public by cutting excise duty, and then petrol and diesel became cheaper by Rs 5 per litre.
At the behest of the Center, the states had also provided relief to the public, but Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal refused to do so, and Delhi people did not get any relief, Mr Bidhuri said.
The VAT is the highest on petrol and diesel in Delhi, he claimed.
“When the Kejriwal government came to power in 2015, it used to levy only 20 per cent VAT on petrol and 12 per cent on diesel,” he said, adding that it increased the VAT on petrol and diesel to 30 percent.
Although VAT on diesel was also reduced to 16.75 per cent in 2020, it is still higher than the other states, while 30 per cent VAT is highest on petrol, he said.
Delhi Congress president Anil Kumar demanded the Delhi government reduce VAT on fuel and bring it to the level that existed during the Congress government to give some relief to the people who have been “mercilessly exploited” by the Modi and Kejriwal governments over the past seven years.
He said when the Congress-led UPA was in power at the Centre, excise duty on petrol and diesel was Rs 24.34 and Rs 13.77, respectively, which went up sharply to Rs 32.90 and Rs 31.80, respectively during the Modi government.
He said VAT also went up from 20 per cent to 30 per cent on petrol and from 12.5 per cent to 16.75 per cent on diesel.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)