Tag: diesel prices

Fuel Price Hike

On 25/6/2010 the government of India increased prices of petrol by Rs.3.50, diesel by Rs.2/- kerosene by Rs.3/- per litre and LPG by Rs.35/-per cylinder. Petrol and diesel prices were decontrolled.

The increase has come at a time when food price inflation is about 18%.

The increase was avoidable. For the week ended 18/6/2010 foreign exchange reserves increased by $3 billion. If the government had not increased foreign exchange reserves the dollar value would have gone down making oil import cost less and there would have been no need for price increase.

Now also the price increase can be reversed if the government sells $3 billion. That will increase the value of rupee against dollar. Whenever the price of oil goes up government can sell dollars and rupee appreciates and there is no need of price rice. India has enough foreign exchange reserves.

Oil is a finite commodity. We have to use solar and wind power. Oil prices are likely to go up and any accident like that of BP oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico will have far reaching consequences.

The government does not have to run oil marketing companies. Some years ago there was an attempt to privatise them. Vested interests opposed that.

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Cut motion and government fall

Lok Sabha is in recess. Budget session will resume in April. Various parties have said they will bring cut motions against increase of petrol and diesel prices in budget. Government is firm in its refusal to rollback price hike. UPA allies have opposed price hike.
If a cut motion is passed the government falls. Many have commented that no party wants elections and cut motion will not be passed. Some parties may not like to vote with BJP. They are wrong. The unity shown by the parties on budget day may repeat. Left Front has said the price rise is not a political issue, it is a people’s issue. They will remind people that Congress voted with BJP to pull down V. P. Singh government. In politics there are no permanent friends or enemies.
It is not a question whether any party wants election or not. Sometimes things get out of hand. It happened in 1999. Just a year after election AIADMK withdrew support to Vajpayee government and the government lost the vote of confidence. Those who had hoped to form the government could not do so. Elections followed. The best laid plans of men and mice go awry.
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Rajya Sabha and reservation for women

On 9/3/2010 Rajya Sabha passed women’s reservation bill 186-1. Before that seven members were suspended. They refused to leave the house and marshals lifted and carried them out. BSP members walked out. TMC members abstained. BSP and TMC are headed by women. Congress, BJP and Left Front had issued whips in favour of the bill.
On 26/2/2010 when budget was presented members of all opposition parties had walked out in protest against the rise in petrol and diesel prices. If the intention of passing the bill was to break opposition unity the government succeeded.
Interestingly in the bill Rajya Sabha does not have reservation for women.
During TV discussions some people who favoured women’s reservation mentioned that Pakistan has 27% reservation for women and Afghanistan 20%. Do these people want India to end up like Pakistan and Afghanistan which have many terrorists? Possibly the reservations are one reason for terrorism. Men who could have become legislators were deprived of their chance and took to guns. In that case India with 33% reservation can become worse than Pakistan.
Some women said men do not share power. Politics is not charity. You have to fight for your space and get it. Women in politics do not share power. Once Rita Bahuguna said something nasty about Mayawati.
No constitutional amendment has the right to alter the basic structure of constitution. Women pay less Income Tax than men. Seats are reserved for women in city buses. Some Supreme Court lawyer should file a petition against such injustice to men.
If women’s reservation becomes a reality many will have to change their constituencies at least once. Lal Krishna Advani will not be able to contest from Gandhinagar. Rahul Gandhi will not be able to contest from Amethi. Some women who are presently legislators and did not have women opposing them will have women opponents.

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