Guwahati, Feb 21 (IANS) Ahead of the Assam polls, the opposition Congress on Sunday launched agitations in all the 34 districts of the state to protest against the rising fuel prices.Senior Congress leaders including former Union Minister and AICC General Secretary Mukul Wasnik led the agitations, which has also become as a major agenda for the opposition parties before the Assembly elections slated for April-May.While presenting the vote-on-account in the state Assembly, Assam Finance and Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on February 12 announced to remove the additional cess of Rs 5 levied on the petrol and diesel last year, when Covid-19 pandemic was at its peak.Assam Pradesh Congress president Ripun Bora while addressing a protest rally in Hojai said that the base price of petrol is Rs 33.46 per litre and that of diesel is Rs 31.82 per litre in the state."However, the common man is forced to pay Rs 87 per litre and Rs 82 per litre for petrol and diesel respectively. The BJP is simply looting the people in the name of taxes," Bora said."I would simply like to ask the BJP government on what basis it decides the petroleum prices every day? What is the explanation for subjecting the people of Assam to this cruelty," state Congress Campaign Committee Chairman Pradyut Bordoloi said.Congress' Deputy leader in the Lok Sabha Gaurav Gogoi said that the BJP government is looting the public by raising the fuel prices, amid the raging pandemic.Congress Legislature Party leader Debabrata Saikia said that the common man is burdened with the price rise, so will the BJP government clarify whom it is busy levying tax for?"Who are those being favoured by the government at the expense of making people suffer so much."All India Mahila Congress president Sushmita Dev, who is leading the protests in different districts. said that the "so called 'double engine' BJP governments at the Centre and the state are fooling the people"."Reducing Rs 5 on petrol-diesel ahead of the state elections is a hoax! Reality is the Modi government at the Centre has increased tax to favour their corporate friends," alleged Dev, a former Lok Sabha Member and daughter of late Union Minister Santosh Mohan Dev.
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