Dimapur, November 19: NPP Nagaland has slammed the Government of Nagaland for the recent hike in tax on petrol and diesel, terming the hike as “bereft of any possible logic” and “anti-people”.
“NPP Nagaland State is shocked that the Government of the day could resort to such inhuman practice of increasing the tax on the essential fuels on diesel and petrol respectively in lieu of the COVID-19 cess which was abrogated just recently. It is highly condemnable that instead of allaying the financial burden of the people during this Christmas season, it has resorted to an anti-people hike in the prices of fuel which will double the burden of the common people as it will unduly result in price rise across the state which is akin to adding salt to the injury of the people,” the party said in a statement.
Stating that prices of commodities are already at an all time high due to various reasons, the NPP said the additional hike in fuel prices will give the traders another opportunity hike prices of commodities. “This illegitimate manner in which the State Government has tried to add to the burdens of the common people during this crisis is totally intolerable and we condemn this arbitrary action of the State Government in the harshest terms,” it said.
Alleging that the State Government has given “a very lame excuse” by citing financial crisis of the State for the hike in fuel prices, the statement said, “However, what is the logic of passing on the burden of the financial crisis to the common people?
In fact, during these trying times, the government should have the moral credibility of not increasing the prices of commodities, including fuel, but instead it is a moral obligation to lower taxes so that consumers are spared the burden. The government obviously has better options instead of increasing the fuel prices.”
The NPP also stated that the State Government has made a mockery of itself by calling the legitimate criticism of the Government policies and practices by the opposition parties as “barking”.
“This shows the low mentality and arrogant attitude of the state government whereby they cannot stand any criticism or opposition. They should very well understand that ours is a democratic set up and for a healthy democratic society to flourish, there should be enough space for healthy criticism and the government should lend its ears to the demands and criticisms of the people including that of the opposition political parties. This will ensure that there is proper check and balance in the democratic system of our state,” it reminded.
The party also censured the Government for not taking notice of “the deplorable condition of Community Health Centres overgrown with jungle in the rural areas with little or no facility at all and the horrible condition of the roads which are not filled with potholes but with craters in most of the road stretches.”
“Is this the change that the government talks about bringing? Change does not happen only with some cosmetic transformation in the State Capital. The government should take initiatives to set up industries and revive the stagnant and dormant industries so that resources of the state can be utilized to produce indigenous goods which will not only help in reviving the economy of the state but also help in providing employment opportunities to thousands of our educated youths,” it said. The party appealed to the State Government to draft an action plan for boosting the State’s economy by sustainable development rather than arbitrary taxation.
The NPP further urged the Government to roll back the “inhuman hike” in petrol and diesel prices across the State. (Page News Service)