Thiruvananthapuram(PTI): In a bid to give some relief from the steep petrol price increase, Kerala and Uttarakhand governments today waived tax on the additional amount to bring down the fuel price by up to 25 per cent of the hike.
The Congress welcomed the decision of the two state governments to cushion the impact of the yesterday’s fuel hike by rationalising the state taxes after it triggered public anger and asked other states to follow suit.
Petrol prices will now come down by Rs 1.63/l and Rs 1.87/l in Congress-led UDF-ruled Kerala and BJP-ruled Uttarakhand respectively. It was increased by Rs 7.54 per litre.
“Certain state governments have already taken the lead in rationalising the state taxes on petrol, that is indeed a welcome measure. We do hope that others would also step to the plate,” Congress spokesman Manish Tewari told reporters in Delhi.
Kerala’s UDF government said it was committed to bringing some relief to the people affected by the latest increase.
“UDF government does not justify the Centre’s decision to increase prices. But we are committed to bringing some relief to people and are bringing down sales tax on petrol.
With this decision, petrol price will come down by Rs 1.63 per litre,” Chief Minister Oommen Chandy told reporters in Thiruvananthapuram after a special cabinet meeting.
Stating that Kerala would stand to lose Rs 218 crore through the decision, he said the state had already asked the Centre to reconsider the petrol price hike.
The government has also decided to introduce austerity measures and to check use of petrol by government offices, the Chief Minister said.
The Uttarakhand government decided to waive off VAT on the increased amount, providing a a relief of Rs 1.87/l.
A decision to this effect was taken at the state cabinet presided over by chief minister Vijay Bahuguna in Dehra Dun last night, official sources said.
After the hike in the prices last night, petrol is currently being sold in the hill state at the rate of Rs 75.24 per litre.