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Why can’t the Centre cut taxes instead: Opposition CMs respond to PM Modi's reduce VAT appeal

On Wednesday, the PM said some states did not reduce VAT on petrol and diesel despite the excise duty cut by the Centre last November and had done "injustice" to the people by not transferring the benefits of the move to them.

April 28, 2022 / 01:07 PM IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging states to cut VAT on fuel to pass on the benefits to citizens has elicited a sharp response from the Opposition chief ministers who wondered why can’t the Centre cut taxes instead.

Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao said the PM "should feel ashamed" to ask states to cut taxes since there had been no hike in fuel tax since 2015 in his state.

“Why can't the Centre cut taxes instead of asking states? The Centre has not only enhanced taxes, it also collects cess. If you have the guts, explain the enhanced taxes," Rao was quoted as saying by NDTV.

READ: Fuel Prices on April 28: Check out petrol, diesel rates in Mumbai, Delhi and other cities

Speaking during interactions with CMs over emerging COVID-19 situation on Wednesday, the PM, citing fuel prices in different states, said some states did not reduce VAT on petrol and diesel despite the excise duty cut by the Centre last November and had done "injustice" to the people by not transferring the benefits of the move to them.

Many states such as Maharashtra, West Bengal, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu for some reason or the other did not listen to the central government and the citizens of those states continued to be burdened, he said.

Also Read | Seven states have cut VAT on jet fuel, more expected to follow soon

"I request that what should have been done in November, you should pass on the benefit to the citizens by reducing VAT," PM Modi said.

Accusing the PM of delivering a one-sided speech during the interaction, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee said her government had spent Rs 1,500 crore in the last three years to subsidise petrol and diesel prices.

Also Read | Rahul Gandhi attacks PM Modi over fuel price issue

"PM Narendra Modi has delivered a completely one-sided and misleading speech. Facts shared by him were wrong. We have been providing a subsidy of Re 1 on every litre of petrol and diesel for the last three years,” the Trinamool Congress chief said.

Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot said that his government had reduced VATs on diesel and petrol on three occasions, which resulted in an annual revenue loss of about Rs 6,300 crore while his Maharashtra counterpart Uddhav Thackeray said state governments could not be held responsible for the spike in fuel prices.



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