If you own vehicle, you can afford petrol: Alphons
Union tourism minister KJ Alphons stoked a controversy on Saturday when he justified fuel price hikes by saying that people who could afford vehicles should be paying the increased prices.
Addressing the media at the Kerala state capital, Alphons said the Centre was imposing tax to help the poor lead a dignified life.
“Who buys petrol? Somebody who has a car or bike. Certainly he’s not starving. People who can afford to pay should pay,” he said, adding that people who always criticise fuel price hike should remember it is for the benefit of the country.
The bureaucrat-turned-politician’s comment come at a time when fuel prices are at a threeyear high though international crude prices have crashed, attracting criticism from opposition parties which described them as insensitive to the common man’s problems.
Congress leader and former petroleum minister Veerappa Moily called it an atrocious statement. “This is how bureaucrats, who come to politics, have no understanding of people’s problems,” Telangana Rashtra Samithi spokesman Bhanuprasad described Alphons’ statement as shocking. The government is still fleecing people when crude prices have come down, he said.
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